Steinbrenner: Yankees will be active in free agency

Posted: 22/05/2017 in MLB, Sports
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Even though the New York Yankees made a big splash in free agency by signing Aroldis Chapman in the offseason, the franchise has been quieter in recent years in terms of luring new players to the Bronx. Those days may be over, though, as soon next season.

“We do have a significant amount of money coming off this year,” Hal Steinbrenner told reporters Wednesday, via the Wall Street Journal’s Jared Diamond.

“As we always do, we’ll put it back into the club. We will be active in the free-agent market I can assure you – to what degree and in what areas remains to be seen.”

The biggest savings will come when pitchers CC Sabathia and Michael Pineda become free agents following the 2017 season, as they’re earning $25 million and $7.4 million, respectively. An additional $22 million could come off the books if Masahiro Tanaka elects to opt out of his contract. Otherwise, Tanaka isn’t a free agent until after 2020.

In addition to the team’s current players, the Yankees are paying Alex Rodriguez $21 million in 2017, and not a cent after.

With Rodriguez off the books, combined with the free agents who are likely departing – including Matt Holliday‘s $13 million – the Yankees are set to clear up to $98 million if Tanaka does opt out. Some of that money will be distributed among arbitration-eligible players, but it’s still a significant amount to be potentially freed up.

Not that the Yankees have ever lived lean. Even now, New York has the second-highest payroll in baseball. With three-fifths of the team’s rotation potentially hitting free agency, however, the Yankees could be on the lookout for fresh talent.

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