The Yankees have signed right-hander Jhoulys Chacín to a minor-league contract, per the MLB.com transactions page. Chacín will have an $800K base salary if he makes the MLB roster, with an additional $200K available in incentives, reports Jon Heyman of MLB Network (Twitter link).
Chacín has pitched in the big leagues in each of the past twelve seasons, although his playing time dwindled last year. After a pair of productive seasons in 2017-18 with the Padres and Brewers, Chacín struggled badly in 2019 between the Brewers and Red Sox. He posted just a 6.01 ERA over 103.1 innings (24 starts). While his 21.5% strikeout rate was actually his best mark since 2010, Chacín issued a few too many walks and was plagued by the home run ball. Some of his struggles were a product of an unsustainably high HR/FB rate, but Chacín’s once-lofty ground ball numbers had rapidly fallen off by 2019.
That poor season led Chacín to settle for a minor-league deal with the Twins last offseason. After being cut loose by Minnesota, he found a big league contract with the Braves. His time in Atlanta was short-lived, though, as Chacín was designated for assignment in early August after a pair of relief appearances. He sat out the remainder of the season.
Chacín will now be in line to compete for a rotation or long relief spot in the Bronx. With Luis Severino uncertain for the start of the season after a February 2020 Tommy John surgery, there’s room for improvement in the Yankee rotation behind Gerrit Cole. New York has seen each of Masahiro Tanaka and James Paxton hit free agency this winter.