2011 Contract Issues: New York Yankees

The Yankees face one contractual option after the season: designated hitter Nick Johnson has a $5.5MM mutual option with a $250K buyout.  Johnson is currently on the DL with an inflamed tendon in his wrist.  It seems unlikely that both sides will exercise the option.

If Johnson goes, the Yankees will be freeing up a total of $67.7MM for departing free agents.  Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera, Andy Pettitte, and Javier Vazquez lead the way.  We'll also tack on another $2.2375 for Alex Rodriguez's salary decrease and money no longer paid to Chad Gaudin and Melky Cabrera.  That's $70MM coming off the books.

Increases to players under contract total $8.5MM, with Curtis Granderson, Mark Teixeira, Nick Swisher, and Robinson Cano getting raises.  The Yankees also have Joba Chamberlain and Phil Hughes hitting arbitration for the first time.  Boone Logan would be a second-timer, while Sergio Mitre fits into the fourth-time class.  Even adding in the arbitration raises, the Yankees should have a good $55MM to work with without raising payroll.

Of course, a large chunk of that $55MM or so will be allocated toward new contracts for Jeter, Rivera, and possibly Pettitte.  If all three re-sign near their 2010 salaries, it'll eat up most of the free money.  In that case a payroll increase would be necessary to get into the mix on other big-name free agents.

Thanks to Cot's Baseball Contracts for the information.


53 Responses to 2011 Contract Issues: New York Yankees Leave a Reply

  1. They’ll resign Mo and Jeter. Pettitte will probably retire, then the Yankees will go after any and every big name free agent, because that’s what they do. It’s not even competitive any more. They throw around money like it ain’t no thing because to them it isn’t. So who are the big name FAs next season? Why not just sign every player in the league have a roster of like 1,000 players and then play little league teams.

    • stevefromwaltham 5 years ago

      How many big name Free Agents did the Yankees go after this past season? Lackey? Nope. Bay? Nope. Holliday? Nope. They signed Nick Johnson and Randy Winn and made trades for Vazquez and Granderson. Hardly a huge spending spree.

    • alphakira 5 years ago

      Why? Because it’s not 2015 yet – that’s my prediction. In 2015 the Yankees will have purchased all players in baseball, designating for assignment the remaining players that don’t fit into their MLB, AAA, AA, A and Rookie class teams. Only then will the rest of our teams have a crack at the remaining players.

    • roshkoch 5 years ago

      Yeah, because last year they just went out signing everyone, right? Come on now, every team in baseball tries to sign free agents. Do you know who one of the few owners to vote AGAINST free agency was? Oh yeah, George M. Steinbrenner. He said it would ruin baseball. He knew the advantage would go to large market teams. He was right. Now quit crying about it and start giving grief to your team’s ownership for not reinvesting all that money that the big market teams pay back out through luxury taxes into players, instead of their own greedy pockets.

    • Kolukonu 5 years ago

      Is that so? That’s why the Yanks signed Matt Holliday, Jason Bay, John Lackey last season, right? Oh wait, they didn’t.

    • East Coast Bias 5 years ago

      Currently, MLB rosters are limited to 25 players, so I don’t see that happening. Plus, they don’t really rake in the $ from Scranton Wilkes Barre, Trenton, Tampa, or Charleston.

      I understand it’s hyperbole, but at least make some sense when venting your frustration.

    • East Coast Bias 5 years ago

      Currently, MLB rosters are limited to 25 players, so I don’t see that happening. Plus, they don’t really rake in the $ from Scranton Wilkes Barre, Trenton, Tampa, or Charleston.

      I understand it’s hyperbole, but at least make some sense when venting your frustration.

  2. I see Pettitte retiring and the Yankees going hard for Cliff Lee,, possibly backloading his contract.

    • 04Forever 5 years ago

      I agree

    • thesportsshowlive 5 years ago

      What sense would it make to back load his contract? He’s got a history of injuries and is on the wrong side of 30.

      • The fact that they might not be able to afford him without upping payroll again in the early years?

    • thesportsshowlive 5 years ago

      What sense would it make to back load his contract? He’s got a history of injuries and is on the wrong side of 30.

  3. 04Forever 5 years ago

    I can see the Yankees going for Cliff Lee very hard in the summer time this July and even harder in the offseason. Javier will probably get traded as well, probably to the Mets if i had to make an educated guess. The Yankees dont need to make improvements, just maintain and get a big name pitcher to make up for the big screwup in acquiring Javier.

    • alphakira 5 years ago

      If the Mets wouldn’t take a risk on a former ace in Ben Sheets as well as some decent 3-4 pitchers (Wang, Marquis, etc.), they won’t take a risk – and have to TRADE a player, not just eat salary – on Vazquez. Don’t believe everything you read from uneducated beat reporters, even Minaya isn’t that stupid.

      • 04Forever 5 years ago

        maybe, but i doubt its put to bed anytime soon

      • East Coast Bias 5 years ago

        Right on. Who would actually take a flier on Javy in his current state. I don’t know where that Mets rumor came from or why it’s still going. You’re right – some people believe everything they read.

      • East Coast Bias 5 years ago

        Right on. Who would actually take a flier on Javy in his current state. I don’t know where that Mets rumor came from or why it’s still going. You’re right – some people believe everything they read.

  4. HHHDMS 5 years ago

    its a combination of the Yanks having the money to invest in their team and the players who desire to win a championship or at least be on a serious contender. Some players (most) probably would rather have a big $$$ contract no matter where they play. Someone like Lee could go to NY because the Yanks are in the post season every year. I can also see the NYY going after Lee and possibly Werth or Crawford.

  5. doral4720 5 years ago

    It’s funny how the Yankee haters ALWAYS bring up money as the sole reason the Yankees win championships. The Yankees pay a hefty luxury tax and there are other teams with just as much or more money than the Yankees. The problem is that unlike the Yankees who are committed to winning championships most of these teams put their money in their pockets instead of putting a good team on the field. If all it takes is money then how do you explain that the Yankees didn’t win a championship in 18 years (1978 to 1996). Thank god for George Steinbrenner and his commitment to winning championships.

    • Yankees420 5 years ago

      Look I’m a Yankee fan but I do need to correct your claim that there is a team that has “just as much or more money than the Yankees.” See the Yankees revenue last year was 174MM dollars more than the revenue of the team that made the 2nd most money. The Yankees have an unfair advantage that is within the rules and they use it. But I don’t like people bashing on the Yankees for using this advantage, almost any other team in baseball would do the exact same thing if they could.

  6. doral4720 5 years ago

    It’s funny how the Yankee haters ALWAYS bring up money as the sole reason the Yankees win championships. The Yankees pay a hefty luxury tax and there are other teams with just as much or more money than the Yankees. The problem is that unlike the Yankees who are committed to winning championships most of these teams put their money in their pockets instead of putting a good team on the field. If all it takes is money then how do you explain that the Yankees didn’t win a championship in 18 years (1978 to 1996). Thank god for George Steinbrenner and his commitment to winning championships.

  7. doral4720 5 years ago

    It’s funny how Yankee haters ALWAYS point to money as the only reason the Yankees win championships. The Yankees pay a hefty luxury tax every year and there are teams that have as much money or more than the Yankees. The difference is that the Yankees put their money towards keeping or signing new players. A lot of the other teams take their money in put it in their pockets. If money is all it takes then how do you explain the Yankees not winning a championship for 18 years (1978 to 1996)? Thank god for George Steinbrenner and his commitment to winning.

  8. doral4720 5 years ago

    It’s funny how Yankee haters ALWAYS point to money as the only reason the Yankees win championships. The Yankees pay a hefty luxury tax every year and there are teams that have as much money or more than the Yankees. The difference is that the Yankees put their money towards keeping or signing new players. A lot of the other teams take their money in put it in their pockets. If money is all it takes then how do you explain the Yankees not winning a championship for 18 years (1978 to 1996)? Thank god for George Steinbrenner and his commitment to winning.

  9. mikeclyne 5 years ago

    2011 NY Yankees
    Lineup
    Jeter
    Crawford
    Arod
    Tex
    Cano
    Granderson
    Posada
    Swisher
    Gardner

    Rotation
    CC
    Lee
    AJ
    Hughes
    Aceves

    • Yankees420 5 years ago

      First off, why is A-Rod batting 3rd all of a sudden, and why do we have 4 OF in the starting lineup, which one of them is the DH? And how does Aceves win the 5th rotation spot? McAllister or Nova would probably do better than Aceves, who is better suited as our long reliever.

  10. mikeclyne 5 years ago

    2011 NY Yankees
    Lineup
    Jeter
    Crawford
    Arod
    Tex
    Cano
    Granderson
    Posada
    Swisher
    Gardner

    Rotation
    CC
    Lee
    AJ
    Hughes
    Aceves

  11. Kolukonu 5 years ago

    I see the Yanks targeting Crawford if he makes it to FA, or Werth if Crawford doesn’t pan out. And as evident, they need another SP (what a surprise?), so a run at Cliff Lee would not shock me in the slightest.

  12. Kolukonu 5 years ago

    I see the Yanks targeting Crawford if he makes it to FA, or Werth if Crawford doesn’t pan out. And as evident, they need another SP (what a surprise?), so a run at Cliff Lee would not shock me in the slightest.

  13. With Brett Gardners breakout season, I do not see the Yankees going after Crawford. They will stick with their OF of Gardner, Granderson, and Swisher, and they could potentially go with some combination of Posada/Cervelli/Montero at the DH and C positions. Vazquez and Pettites expiring contracts combined will likely be around the same amount as Lee’s yearly salary. This will give them the potential lineup of:
    C: Posada/Cervelli/Montero
    1B: Teixeira
    2B: Cano
    3B: Rodriguez
    SS: Jeter
    LF: Granderson
    CF: Gardner
    RF: Swisher
    DH: Posada/Montero

    SP: Sabathia
    SP: Lee
    SP: Burnett
    SP: Hughes
    SP: Chamberlain

    • Boz 5 years ago

      I don’t think Joba will ever be a starter again. I think that it is becoming more and more obvious that he is the heir apparent to Mo.

    • Boz 5 years ago

      I don’t think Joba will ever be a starter again. I think that it is becoming more and more obvious that he is the heir apparent to Mo.

  14. With Brett Gardners breakout season, I do not see the Yankees going after Crawford. They will stick with their OF of Gardner, Granderson, and Swisher, and they could potentially go with some combination of Posada/Cervelli/Montero at the DH and C positions. Vazquez and Pettites expiring contracts combined will likely be around the same amount as Lee’s yearly salary. This will give them the potential lineup of:
    C: Posada/Cervelli/Montero
    1B: Teixeira
    2B: Cano
    3B: Rodriguez
    SS: Jeter
    LF: Granderson
    CF: Gardner
    RF: Swisher
    DH: Posada/Montero

    SP: Sabathia
    SP: Lee
    SP: Burnett
    SP: Hughes
    SP: Chamberlain

  15. jacobjackson 5 years ago

    I agree with most of the commenters here. Brett Gardner’s emergence allows them to place Crawford/Werth on the backburner, and priortize Cliff Lee.

    Even if Pettitte doesn’t retire, I think they make it their top priority to sign Lee, because the 2012 FA pitching class has absolutely nothing. The Verlander, Felix Hernandez, Josh Johnson extensions really evaporated it.

    So if they don’t sign Lee this offseason they basically can’t make a significant pitching upgrade until Grienke in 2013. They won’t put themselves in that position.

    • ArmchairGM 5 years ago

      Greinke will not be going to pitch in a big market. He doesn’t like the atmosphere.

      • jacobjackson 5 years ago

        Does he like $22M a year over six years? Small markets won’t offer that.

    • ArmchairGM 5 years ago

      Greinke will not be going to pitch in a big market. He doesn’t like the atmosphere.

  16. jacobjackson 5 years ago

    I agree with most of the commenters here. Brett Gardner’s emergence allows them to place Crawford/Werth on the backburner, and priortize Cliff Lee.

    Even if Pettitte doesn’t retire, I think they make it their top priority to sign Lee, because the 2012 FA pitching class has absolutely nothing. The Verlander, Felix Hernandez, Josh Johnson extensions really evaporated it.

    So if they don’t sign Lee this offseason they basically can’t make a significant pitching upgrade until Grienke in 2013. They won’t put themselves in that position.

  17. YanksFanSince78 5 years ago

    They’ll resign Mo and Jeter. Pettitte will probably retire, then the Yankees will go after any and every big name free agent, because that’s what they do. It’s not even competitive any more. They throw around money like it ain’t no thing because to them it isn’t. So who are the big name FAs next season? Why not just sign every player in the league have a roster of like 1,000 players and then play little league teams.
    —–

    Really? Like all the free agents they DIDN’T sign last year or in 2008? C’mon..let’s be original.

    Realistically the Yanks, assuming they resign Jeter, Mo and one of Pettite/Vazquez, will be set at 1B, 2B, SS, 3B, C, CF and RF. I leave LF as a question mark simply because Gardner still isn’t a “lock” with 120 games left this year. In the rotation you have CC, AJ, Hughes and probably one other hold over from this years staff. The Yanks would therefore have openings for a LF/RF, another SP and perhaps a DH. Nox exactly a need to go out and sign every single FA available next year. I expect them to make some moves but not in the same manner as 2009 when they went after CC, AJ and Tex.

  18. YanksFanSince78 5 years ago

    They’ll resign Mo and Jeter. Pettitte will probably retire, then the Yankees will go after any and every big name free agent, because that’s what they do. It’s not even competitive any more. They throw around money like it ain’t no thing because to them it isn’t. So who are the big name FAs next season? Why not just sign every player in the league have a roster of like 1,000 players and then play little league teams.
    —–

    Really? Like all the free agents they DIDN’T sign last year or in 2008? C’mon..let’s be original.

    Realistically the Yanks, assuming they resign Jeter, Mo and one of Pettite/Vazquez, will be set at 1B, 2B, SS, 3B, C, CF and RF. I leave LF as a question mark simply because Gardner still isn’t a “lock” with 120 games left this year. In the rotation you have CC, AJ, Hughes and probably one other hold over from this years staff. The Yanks would therefore have openings for a LF/RF, another SP and perhaps a DH. Nox exactly a need to go out and sign every single FA available next year. I expect them to make some moves but not in the same manner as 2009 when they went after CC, AJ and Tex.

  19. yankee234 5 years ago

    i think the yanks will go after some big players like lee and crawford. i think this will be the potential lineup:

    ss derek jeter
    lf carl crawford
    1b mark tex
    3b a-rod
    2b cano
    dh posada
    rf swisher
    cf granderson
    c/dh montero

    bench

    cervelli
    pena
    gardner
    johnson

    sp cc
    sp cliff lee
    sp aj
    sp vazquez
    sp hughes

    • jwredsox 5 years ago

      so the yankees are going to spend money on vazquez, jeter, and assumingly rivera, AND are going to commit over 35mil to Crawford + Lee and not even counting the long term dollars? Doubtful at best.

      • Yankees420 5 years ago

        I completely agree, and if Gardner plays at the level he is all year then I think the only big name the Yankees go after is Lee. (Not counting Jeter and Mo because we all know they’ll retire in a Yankee uniform)

  20. yankee234 5 years ago

    i think the yanks will go after some big players like lee and crawford. i think this will be the potential lineup:

    ss derek jeter
    lf carl crawford
    1b mark tex
    3b a-rod
    2b cano
    dh posada
    rf swisher
    cf granderson
    c/dh montero

    bench

    cervelli
    pena
    gardner
    johnson

    sp cc
    sp cliff lee
    sp aj
    sp vazquez
    sp hughes

  21. Trious 5 years ago

    It is time to get Javier out of NY which he doesnt like and the Yankees obviously dont like

    He is a non-NY kind of guy that will succeed elsewhere. Most know that so his value is still high

  22. Vazquez is a National League fraud just like so many others.

    Which is why trading for him if you are a NL GM might not be a bad idea at all, buying low on a guy that can get NL-outs.

  23. Yankeefan4life 5 years ago

    I see the Yankees resigning Jeter and Rivera and Pettitte will retire. Based on how Vazquez does the rest of this year, I can see them resigning him or looking for another #3 or #4 starter such as Jon Garland or Ben Sheets. The 2 big signings for the Yankees I see are Cliff Lee or Brandon Webb (most likely Lee) and an Outfield or DH signing. I don’t really think Jason Werth or Carl Crawford will sign with the Yankees as their outfield is pretty much set with Gardner, Granderson and Swisher. Perhaps Cashman would make a trade that sends Swisher somewhere in which then I can see Werth or Crawford possible. Depending on how Jorge Posada’s legs do this year I see him spending most of the time next year being the DH with Cervelli getting the most time starting. In case of a scenario in which Posada feels like he’s 20 and catches majority of the games I can see a DH signing happening. Could this mean a re-union with Johnny Damon who will be a free agent? I can also see them resigning Sergio Mitre who has been decent this year to be a long reliever in the Bull pen, and perhaps even Marcus Thames.

    All in all, the Yankees only sign 2 big guys and 3 or 4 small adjustments.

    Positional Players

    C: Posada/Cervelli
    1B: Mark Teixeira
    2B: Robinson Cano
    3B: Alex Rodriguez
    SS: Derek Jeter
    LF: Gardner
    CF: Granderson
    RF: Swisher/Werth??
    DH: Posada/Players with half day off (E: Rodriguez, Jeter, Teixeira, etc)

    Starting Rotation

    SP: CC Sabathia
    SP: AJ Burnett
    SP: Phil Hughes
    SP: Cliff Lee
    SP: Javier Vazquez/Jon Garland/Ben Sheets

    Relievers

    CP: Mariano Rivera
    SU: Joba Chamberlain
    LP: Damaso Marte
    MRP: David Robertson
    MRP: Boone Logan
    LRP: Sergio Mitre
    LRP: Alfredo Aceves

    Bench

    C: Francisco Cervelli
    INF: Ramiro Pena
    OF: Marcus Thames
    OF: Greg Golson

    Overall the money being spent shouldn’t be that much as I only see them signing Cliff Lee as their biggest free agent.

  24. Yankees579 5 years ago

    Umm no. Some of you obviously are too jealous. The ONLY reason why the Yankees Payroll is so high, is because we resign our superstars. Name me one team that pays their closer 15 million a year?
    The only players on the Yankees current roster that the Yankees SIGNED are texeira, arod, CC, AND AJ. every other player was either traded or homegrown talent. Stop being so whiny.

    Anyways back to my free agent assessment.. I agree that the Yankees will NOT sign Crawford.. Tho I hope they do.. Yankees should focus on pitching ONLY. now.. Here are a few options as to what they can do..
    1. Sign lee to a cc comparable contract, resign jeter, resign mo, HOPEFULLY resign pettitte, and end it..
    2. Sign lee, Sign Crawford, resign jeter, resign mo, petite retires.. TRADE granderson + package for a big name pitcher.

    I hope jeter plays better.. It would be a waste of money if he hits .270 again..

  25. Yankees579 5 years ago

    What if we traded posada an cervelli for prospects and signed victor Martinez..

    It won’t happen, but oh well I’d like to fantasize I guess!

  26. well Jav will not come back nxt yr the way he pitched. Pettitte will come back they’ll sign jeter mo and him to contracts i say jeter 4 yr 50mil mo 2 yr 30mil and pettitte 1 yr 10 mil then they will go after Cliff Lee to fill another spot. One thing they need is to sure up there bench maybe get another IF and OF.Maybe damon or matsui reunion??? never know. this is there starters

    1.posada DH
    2.A-rod 3B
    3.Cano 2B
    4. Tex 1B
    5.Swisher RF
    6.Gardner LF
    7.Granderson CF
    8.Cervelli C
    9.Jeter SS

    bench

    pena
    montero
    miranda
    FA

    1.CC
    2.Lee
    3.Hughes
    4.Pettitte
    5.AJ

    Bullpen

    Rivera
    Joba
    Logan
    Nova
    Wood
    Mitre
    Aceves

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