Yankees Exercise Cano’s, Swisher’s 2012 Options

The Yankees have exercised their 2012 club options on second baseman Robinson Cano and outfielder Nick Swisher, the team announced. Cano's option is for $14MM and Swisher's is for $10.25MM.

Cano, who turned 29 a week ago, has established himself as an elite offensive second baseman, slugging no fewer than 25 homers in each of the past three seasons to go along with his .308/.347/.496 career line. Fangraphs' UZR metric has rated Cano slightly below-average defensively in recent seasons, but his $14MM 2012 salary will still be a bargain relative to his overall production, a fact that may (or may not) have inspired his agent, Scott Boras, to angle for a new contract recently.

Swisher, 31 next month, shrugged off a sluggish start this season to hit 23 homers and post a .260/.374/.449 line, in keeping with his .254/.360/.466 career figures. He didn't fare well during the Yankees' postseason run, leading some to wonder whether the Yankees would decline his option and perhaps pursue someone like Carlos Beltran, but that was quashed yesterday.

The Yankees hold another club option on Cano for 2013 at $15MM, while Swisher is entering the final year of a five-year deal he signed with the Athletics back in May 2007. 

119 Responses to Yankees Exercise Cano’s, Swisher’s 2012 Options Leave a Reply

  1. Sameer Aggarwal 4 years ago

    I can only imagine what Cano’s deal is going to look like when he gets close to the open market. Something like 10 yr/$200M?

    • captainjeter 4 years ago

      are you kidding? Cano will be 31 in October 2013. No way he gets a 10 year  and  is  tied up until he   is 41. That is  nuts. Yanks  are NOT  going to do something stupid  like  that .  More likely it  would  be a  7  year deal  @  155-165 million, maybe  a  team option  for  a  8th year.

  2. metsfan121 4 years ago

    I can only imagine what Cano’s deal is going to look like when he gets
    close to the open market. Something like 10 yr/$200M?

  3. metsfan121 4 years ago

    I can only imagine what Cano’s deal is going to look like when he gets
    close to the open market. Something like 10 yr/$200M?

    • MetsMagic 4 years ago

      Would Pedroia, Zobrist, Kinsler, or Phillips get nearly that much? 

      • metsfan121 4 years ago

        probably not but I feel like if anyone would overpay like that for one of their guys, it would be NYY

        • what about mets over paying for jason bay that come from red sucks

          • vtadave 4 years ago

            You point?

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            Right here

          • Oh you’re cool you called them the Red Sucks. 

            Grow up. 

          • Redsoxn8tion 4 years ago

            Or how about the Yankees outbidding themselves

          • Redsoxn8tion 4 years ago

            ..for A-Rod, Sabathia, Teixeira, Burnett and several other players in the past. Get over it Mr Red Sux. Every team overpays for players. BTW “Yankees Suck” sounds better.

  4. InvalidUserID 4 years ago

    Cano is going to get PAID if he keeps playing like he has been. No brainer on Swisher…he’s been an absolute steal for the price paid (Betemit & K. Teixiera).

  5. i guess this means no beltran for the yankeees lol

    • NYPOTENCE 4 years ago

      Or it could mean a trade of Swisher and a signing of Beltran/Cuddyer.

    • MB923 4 years ago

      Why the lol?

      As if Beltran > Swisher? lol

      • MetsMagic 4 years ago

        Except he is. 

        • MB923 4 years ago

          You mean “Except he was.”

          • FrankTheFunkasaurusRex 4 years ago


          • MB923 4 years ago

            Fine, Beltran is better……At getting hurt.

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            To be fair, Beltran really is better than Swisher when he’s on the field, but Swisher is far more likely to actually stay on the field.

          • MB923 4 years ago

            Not sure if you’re a fan of UZR or not (I’m really not but I’ll only provide this in case you are or others are)


            2009- -3.0
            2010- 0.8
            2011- 8.8

            2009- -6.0
            2010- -7.5
            2011- -9.2

            So no, Beltran is not better on the field. He is getting worse as he ages, and somehow, Swisher is getting better.

            Unless you were combining bat and glove. Maybe Beltran has a better bat when he’s healthy, unfortunately he’s more Not healthy than Healthy the past 3 seasons. And as I siad, his defense is declining, and the Yankees would not put him at DH.

          • FrankTheFunkasaurusRex 4 years ago

            CF vs RF. You have a point for 2011 though.

          • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

            Beltran didn’t play a single game in CF last year and probably never will again so it’s a fair comparison.

          • Rabbitov 4 years ago

            Owning it. 

          • FrankTheFunkasaurusRex 4 years ago

            Which is why I said he has a point for 2011, when he didn’t play CF.

          • I feel like you’re arguing with stupid over here, their lack of reading comprehension is disturbingly apparent, Some Yankee fans just like swisher for his personality, as a baseball player he fails at the most important part of being a Yankee, and has failed repeatedly. Also anyone can play right field in Yankee stadium.

          • MB923 4 years ago

            Arguing with stupid? How clever.

            And the playoffs are a small sample size, it’s ridiculous to not want a player because he hasn’t come up big in the postseason. Prior to 2009, A-Rod and Sabathia had awful postseason numbers. 

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            Fair enough, and with his knees he’s probably not as good of a fielder as Swisher at this point (although for ’09 and ’10 those numbers are CF for Beltran, and would translate to fairly average for RF, and his ’11 numbers were his first time playing a new position), but for the overall package Beltran is more productive than Swisher when he’s on the field, which is key.

          • MB923 4 years ago

            That depends on how much Beltran will get paid. But you gotta figure he’s going to get at least $15 million. 

            Swisher as I said is improving defensively (somehow), a very solid bat, and stays healthy. Beltran is declining defensively, has a bit of a better bat than Swisher, but does not stay healthy. So why take a risk at a guy who probably will get $17 million but  probably has only a 50/50 shot of earning that, when you can have a guy who is making $10 million and has produced $14.2 million, $16.4 million, and $17 million productivity. 

            Again, I’m going based on who will be more worth it, not who will have the better season with the bat.

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            Oh don’t get me wrong, I might think Beltran is the more talented player, but Swisher is definitely a better option simply because he’s going to be paid less and will actually stay on the field and will produce more value relative to contract.

          • John McFadin 4 years ago

            I’m still trying to figure out why in the world you keep saying Beltran is going to get $15+ million.  I find that funny.

          • MB923 4 years ago

            2 words- Scott Boras

            His client came off a solid year and an all star year. You know what I would find funny? If he made less than that.

          • notsureifsrs 4 years ago

            it’s difficult when we only have a year of data. the 2010 and 2009 ‘seasons’ you are quoting combine for less than a full year’s worth of games

            – UZR didn’t like beltran’s performance in right field this year, but DRS and +/- both had him a run above average. TZL had him a couple below

            – swisher rated well above average by UZR this year, but +/- had him several runs below average (DRS right at average). TZL liked him as much as UZR

            – we have enough data on swisher as a RF to draw conclusions about him: he grades out as just above average by every advanced metric

            – counting ’10 and ’09 as a single season and taking it with ’08 and ’07, beltran grades out as an above average centerfielder

            here’s where the assumptions come in. it’s generally assumed that a guy with ample range in center will have even better range in a corner. but it’s also assumed that an aging veteran with knee problems will lose range gradually every year

            right now, we don’t have enough data to get very far beyond those assumptions. we know that swisher is a solid RFer. we know beltran has been a very good CFer. but by the numbers, it looks like a wash (at best) defensively going forward

            that leaves the bats and baserunning. the edge goes to beltran in both of those categories, but not by enough imo to warrant committing more money & years to beltran when you’ve already got swish on a nice one year deal

          • MB923 4 years ago

            I put UZR/150, not UZR, but I suppose it’s not much of a big difference. And as I said I don’t look at UZR much considering I watch the Yankees every game and I do see many misplays by Swisher.

          • notsureifsrs 4 years ago

            it isn’t a difference at all. same sample, just projected over 150 games

            i’m not disagreeing with you, just elaborating. there’s no more baseball for a long time =

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            There’s always football…

          • MB923 4 years ago

            Except for a few games later on in the season, there’s not much on Tuesday through Saturday, unless you’re a hockey fan. I kind of am, but not a huge fan.

          • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

            Hate…football. The Dolphins suck this year. I just wish there was a salary cap so it didn’t seem like it was the Jets, Pats and Steelers every year. Oh wait…..

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            Yeah, I’ll watch a football game now and then, but I’m far from a football fan.  Pretty much the same story with hockey and basketball for me too.

            Winter sucks.

          • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

            Love your logical approach brotha.

          • FrankTheFunkasaurusRex 4 years ago

            and hitting

          • MB923 4 years ago

            As I said, not by a lot.

          • FrankTheFunkasaurusRex 4 years ago

            right, but you said he WAS better, not he IS better, which he is. Will he be better going forward? Probably not. But that’s besides the point.

          • MB923 4 years ago

            I meant overall as a player Swisher is better (right now). I didn’t say Swisher was a better hitter. Kind of like Gardner and Bay. Bay is a better hitter (power wise), but I don’t think anyone will argue for Bay being the better player.

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            Actually it’s a fairly reasonable margin, remember Beltran has been playing mostly in Citi field, while Swish has been in Yankee stadium which is quite a difference.

            Using wRC+ (which is league and park adjusted) Swisher has averaged 126 over the last three years while Beltran has averaged 136 over that same time period.  And 2010 was by far the worst wRC+ of his career and it looks like an aberration since he put up one in line with previous years again this year, so if you use ’08, ’09 and ’11 his average wRC+ is 145 – 20 points higher than Swisher.

          • MB923 4 years ago

            lol I’m not that far deep yet into sabermetrics. 

          • notsureifsrs 4 years ago

            dammit donny

          • notsureifsrs 4 years ago

            how are you defining “a lot”? again, i don’t advocate replacing swisher with beltran, but let’s be realistic about the numbers. wRC+ last 4 seasons:

            swisher 118
            beltran 137

            (we can take out 2008 to help swisher, since that was an outlier season for him and he’ll jump to 126. but we’re doing a bit of cherry picking there and if we extend beltran the same ‘ignore a bad year’ courtesy, he jumps to 144)

            comparables over the time period

            pujols 170 (lol)
            hamilton 136
            teixeira 136

            hunter 118
            abreu 117

            comparables in 2011

            stanton 138
            tulowitzki 138

            freeman 118
            cabrera, asdrubal 118
            cabrera, melky 118

            so by my standards, i’d go ahead and say beltran’s a better hitter by a lot. just not enough to justify signing him

          • MB923 4 years ago

            As I said, I’m not that deep into sabermetrics yet. Give me time please! lol

          • notsureifsrs 4 years ago

            you’ll like wRC. it’s nothing like FIP i promise =D

          • MB923 4 years ago

            Well I’ll take your word for it. So long as you understand my reasoning for disliking FIP (And I understand your reasoning for liking it).

        • MB923 4 years ago

          Tell me the better option, $10 million for Swisher who has played 150 games in 6 straight seasons and has been very productive his last 3 years, or $15+ million for Beltran who has played 150 games just 1 time in the last 6 years, injury prone, declining on defense and has had up and down years with the bat the last few years? (Although he did have a good year in 2011 I will say)

          • MetsMagic 4 years ago

            Beltran’s weak knees would be a much better fit in the small field of Yankee Stadium as opposed to the cavernous right field at Citi. Yes, he’s an injury risk, but he is also still a much better hitter and was worth a win more than Swisher this year.

            For the record, the thought of Carlos in pinstripes makes me sick.

          • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

            Yankee stadium RF is smaller by what, 10 ft further back and maybe another 10 ft to the left? HE STILL HAS TO RUN!!!!!! I really don’t understand why ppl think a player with bad knees at age 35 in the OF is a good idea. I’m dumbfounded. If he were being signed to DH and if Arod hasn’t had his health issues of late and they traded Montero for a stud pitcher, then I would say fine. If Arod is healthy then I can see him at 3b for another 2 or 3 years. if he isn’t then he needs to be DH’d. 

            Beltran, in a walk year, going after his last big contract might play thru some pain long enough to get that deal done. Can you trust him to be the same guy and display the same in 2012? Heck no!

          • MB923 4 years ago

            Exactly. People are acting as if Beltran can be got at a cheap price, but apparently they don’t remember or haven’t heard of Scott Boras

          • MB923 4 years ago

            Maybe he’s a little bit of a better hitter, but he is not a Much better hitter. 2009 was about dead even, 2010 Swisher was better although Beltran was hurt but when he played he was not good, and 2011 Beltran was better. 

            As I said, Swisher is a much better bargain.

          • MB923 4 years ago

            Edited. 2011 Beltran was better

    • captainjeter 4 years ago

      stop laughing.  Next  winter  they will go  after either Hamilton., Victorino, BJ Upton , Andre Ethier or Matt Kemp. MY guess  it will be Kemp.

  6. yankeeboy98 4 years ago

    Cano is going to get a HUGE contract from the Yankees next year. Somewhere around the 6-8 years, $100-140 million range. 

  7. The most shocking move of the offseason yet. Wow!!!

    • MB923 4 years ago

      No that was Ryan Dempster taking his player option.

  8. wickedkevin 4 years ago

    I can only imagine what Cano’s deal is going to look like when
    he gets close to the open market. Something like 10 yr/$200M?

  9. John McFadin 4 years ago

    I can only imagine what Cano’s deal is going to look like when he gets close to the open market. Something like 10 yr/$200M?

    • Are you people freaking moronic robots or something?  Why are you all repeating the same comment over and over again?

      • John McFadin 4 years ago


      • BobMexico 4 years ago

        I can only imagine what Cano’s deal is going to look like when he gets close to the open market. Something like 10 yr/$200M?

        • Rabbitov 4 years ago

          When he gets close to the open market I can only imagine what Cano’s deal is going to look like. 10 yr/$200M or something like?

      • Rabbitov 4 years ago

        Not in the holiday spirit for the loss. 

      • wickedkevin 4 years ago

        I can only imagine what Cano’s deal is going to look like when he gets
        close to the open market. Something like 10 yr/$200M?

  10. AmericanMovieFan 4 years ago

    I’m so happy for Swisher. He deserves to get paid. He may not be an A-list talent, but he’s damn close. Now I just hope that this option year doesn’t make him seem prohibitive in terms of an extension as $10MM per season is probably the ceiling on his salary. I’d love to see the Yanks lock him up to a 2 year/$16MM extension rather than trade him.

    As for Cano, I don’t see them going 10 years/$200 but I do see 7-8 years at $20MM+ per season without a doubt if he keeps this up.

    • Yanks28 4 years ago

      No chance in hell Swish is back after this season.. That’s if he’s lucky enough to come back this year if he’s not traded. With Kp Either Hamiltion etc going open no chance swish is still a yank 2013

      • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

        Ummm..unless Hamilton and Kemp don’t make it to free agency. As for Ethier, I don’t get the love affair. Basically the same age as Swisher, he hit 11 hrs last year, only 3 away from LA, he has a balky knee and Swisher has out performed him the last 2 years, and is a switch hitter. Get over the “glitzy” aspects of Ethier and look at the facts. If Swisher has another good year I would have no problem bringing him back on a 2 year deal, especially if Hamilton and Kemp are off the table.

  11. Cano is only going to get 5 years in a contract, maybe for $100 million, but it’ll probably be front loaded.  The thing is, who is going to be bidding with the Yanks? Sox have Pedroia, and most other teams have 2B locked up.

    As for would Zobrist, Pedroia, et al get that much, none of them are as good as Robbie is.

    • MaineSox 4 years ago

      I think Pedroia, Cano, and Kinsler are the top three second basemen, and a reasonable case could be made for pretty much any order.

      And honestly I don’t know what more Zobrist can do to before he is considered right there with them.

      • Of course red sox fans are going to say pedroia is better than Cano.

        And…Yankee fans are going to say Cano is better.

        My opinion is that Cano is better.  Pedroia seems to have 2-3 good months each year and the rest he is “pedestrian”. 

        • MB923 4 years ago

          Cano is better with the bat, Pedroia is better with the glove. 

        • MaineSox 4 years ago

          If you look at the splits it’s more like Pedroia has 2-3 otherworldly months and the rest he is “merely” good, and over the last three years they have put up the same WAR, but Pedroia has done it in 100 fewer games.  If you go with the last four years Pedroia has Cano by almost 7 WAR.

          And I’m really not being biased (I know it’s hard to take that statement seriously since I’m making it about myself), I personally think the difference between the two is negligible and it’s hard to make a case that one is significantly better than the other. And honestly it would be pretty easy to make a reasonable case for Zobrist being at least as good as either one of them over the last couple years.

          • Rabbitov 4 years ago

            As someone not involved and who equally dislikes both teams I would take Cano in a heartbeat right now, but I really wonder how each would do with even parks and lineups around them. 

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            What are you basing your decision on though? Out of curiosity.

          • wickedkevin 4 years ago

            The only thing that matters.  HIS GUT

          • Rabbitov 4 years ago

            Well I actually lied, I don’t hate each team equally I hate the Yankees more, so choosing Cano is crazy.   Either way, if its close power is the tie-breaker for me. A 2nd baseman with an over .500 slugging percentage for 3 straight seasons.  Thats filthy, and its also why I said I’d love to see them in completely equal parks.

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            That’s fair enough, and like I said I don’t know that the gap between the two is great enough for me to say with any certainty that one is better than the other, but doesn’t the fact that Cano never takes a walk and has a career OBP below .350 kinda negate the additional power?

  12. I like the Swisher 2/16mil deal and think that the Yankees should give Posada a career path through their minor league managing programs. He’d be a great tampa instructor and roving catching and batting and Yankee culture guy.

    • AmericanMovieFan 4 years ago

      If Swish had hit FA I could see the A’s swooping in to bring him back at the price I suggested, maybe a little less like 2 years/$15MM, I could also have seen the Mets go for Swisher as low batting averages and hight prices don’t seem to bug them (their debt notwithstanding), plus they need power, which Swish provides. Hell, the way the Wilpons do things Swish could get 3 years/$25MM from them!

      And yes, I don’t get the love affair with Ethier, either. He’s a good looking prospect who hasn’t really blossomed, in large part due to injuries, but the numbers speak for themselves. 

      I think the “issue” with Swisher is that he ain’t pretty. I don’t mean physically, I mean that his streakiness belies his talents. People remember his month long slumps of a .175 BA with 0-2 HR’s and they forget the months he bats .300 with 5-10 HR’s. It’s selective memory and also I think Swish is a perfect example of perception vs. reality where guys with equal numbers are touted as being worth $13MM+ and nobody wants Swish on more than a 1 year/$5MM deal.As for Cano, if he hit the open market I think there’d be plenty of suitors (again, such as the Mets) and the Giants (They’ll eat $6MM of Freddy Sanchez for Cano) amongst many others.

      • MetsMagic 4 years ago

        If you think Alderson will give bloated contracts to overrated ex-Yankees, you’re nuts. The Mets don’t need a 4th OF at that price nor do they need a 2B at all. 

        • AmericanMovieFan 4 years ago

          They don’t need a 2nd baseman? What are you smoking? First off, it was hypothetical but now that I’ve looked more closely at the numbers, the Mets need all the offense they can get! When Lucas Duda is one of the top 6 most productive offensive players on your team, you sir, have a problem. The Wilpons would absolutely jump all over Cano and who can really argue that Cano is overrated when compared to other 2B’s?

          Same goes for Swisher, in fact. Once again, looking at the Mets line up, your BEST offensive production came from a guy on pace for 25 HR’s and 109 RBI’s in a 162 game season, you have a problem. There’s nothing wrong with those numbers (from Beltran, BTW), but when that’s the best you’ve got, getting a guy who was on pace for 25 HR’s and 92 RBI’s, you can’t really claim you wouldn’t need or want him.

  13. TaillonColeandBellOhMy 4 years ago

    Paul Maholm and Brad Lincoln for Swisher

  14. FrankTheFunkasaurusRex 4 years ago


  15. FrankTheFunkasaurusRex 4 years ago

    I can only imagine what Cano’s deal is going to look like when he gets
    close to the open market. Something like 10 yr/$200M?

  16. I like Swisher but not at that price…talk about overpaid. I would have declined his option and told him if you want to come back for 5 million a year. deal. but 10??? come on man…

    • MB923 4 years ago

      He’s not really overpaid, but Beltran would be well more overpaid than Swisher would be. It’s a good option to pick up. Swisher and Beltran were arguably the 2 best rightfield FA (if Swisher’s option was declined) on the market. Swisher for $10 million is more worth it than Beltran for $15-$20 mil.

    • Rabbitov 4 years ago

      Just about every player on the Yankees is overpaid except for like Nova and Gardner. 

  17. NYBravosFan10 4 years ago

    Seeing as how Cano has said how much he values what his contracts say I don’t see an extension happening. I see him getting resigned during this exclusivity (real word?) period this time next year for the biggest contract ever for a 2nd baseman.

  18. Joey E 4 years ago

    over/under a 120M contract for Cano?

    • notsureifsrs 4 years ago

      10 yr/$200M or something like? when he gets close to the open market i can only imagine what cano’s deal is going to look like

  19. The thing about Swisher is he cant get it done in the Postseason and thats all NY carees about.. I doont mind him coming back, or AJ or anybodys whos doing back now because they got us a ring in 09, but somethings gotta change soon and theres not a lot of places to changes things at..

  20. $6101468 4 years ago

    For the last two seasons I thought Swisher was the most under rated player in baseball – and that is difficult for a NYY in my book. The one metric that is overlooked is the character metric which those worshiping at the metrics altar have yet to synthesize. Give FanGraphs folks something to do this winter.

    The Cano and Pedroia argument I’ll be a homer and go Pedroia. IMO both are quite even. Cano became a big boy after Joe G. b**ch slapped him in 2008. Three great years in a row and with some panache.

  21. Baa101 4 years ago

    It’s been said here already but I think the importance of Swisher’s durability (150 games for 6 straight years) can’t be expressed enough.  He may shrink away in the post-season but his consistency is huge in the 162 games that precede it.  

    It is a little disconcerting that Swisher will be in a walk year and may feel pressure to perform that his track record in the post indicates he won’t react well to.  However, I think Swisher’s durability over 150 games is more important than whatever upgrade offensively Beltran would provide over 100 or so.And I have to agree with sentiment that Swisher will not be back beyond 2013.  Not with the glut of OFs hitting the market.  The Yanks will need to add a prime bat to that line-up to offset A-Rod’s rapid aging process.

  22. BonusCrystals 4 years ago

    Cano is not MLB elite. He is all-star and top 20-25 but not elite.

  23. jmcbosox 4 years ago


  24. wickedkevin 4 years ago


  25. MB923 4 years ago

    lol he called me a loser in another thread and his comment got removed. 

  26. MaineSox 4 years ago

    I think he likes you.

  27. jmcbosox 4 years ago

    seems more of a richard than a john.

  28. MB923 4 years ago

    Really? Really? REALLY?

    While we are at it, let’s get Barry Zito and give up Ivan Nova and let’s get Adam Dunn and give up Jesus Montero, and let’s get back Alfonso Soriano and give up Brett Gardner.

  29. Rabbitov 4 years ago

    Why do no Yankees like Swisher? What do you have against good baseball players? Would you like him more if he did steroids, cheated on his wife, and wore more sweater vests? 

  30. YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

    Swisher > Huff by far in terms of performance and contract.

    Sanchez < Hughes but is very erratic, coming off of a bad year (6 BB/9 IP and a 4.30 FIP), 3 straight years with a declining fastball and declining, yet still respectable, K%, missed a month with left bicep tendinitis and has struggled while pitching in the NL West. 

    Hughes, despite having a horrible year, still had more WAR value than Sanchez (0.7 vs 0.6). He's 4 years younger and I still have faith in his ability to at least be a solid #3 if his velocity can be strong from start to finish like it was in 2010.

  31. notsureifsrs 4 years ago

    there are reasons to be skeptical of UZR, but it doesn’t seem like you know any of them. having said that, baseball reference doesn’t use UZR:

    cano: 16.0 in 480 games
    pedroia: 15.4 in 388 games

  32. There is oWAR. Cano has a 4.8 oWAR last year, and a 6.0 oWAR in 2010. That’s pretty damn good.

  33. MB923 4 years ago

    I almost did not want to read any else of what he said once he said the Yankees should get Jayson Werth.

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