Anthony McCarron, SNY.tv | Twitter |
Luis Severino got paid life-changing money and didn't have to endure the potential hurt feelings that the nitpicking of an arbitration hearing can sometimes make bloom. The Yankees grabbed cost certainty on an ace-level arm.
And the rest of us scored some juicy topics to kick around when the Yanks and Severino came to an agreement Friday on a contract extension for the righty. Especially this:
Does Severino's deal signal that the Yanks are ready to talk pre-free agency deals with the rest of their young studs? In other words, on deck, Aaron Judge?
The Yankees certainly know that big paydays are looming for their new young core.
At the owner's meetings last month in Orlando, Yanks' owner Hal Steinbrenner, apart from bristling over the idea that his club was being cheap this winter because it hadn't paid for Manny Machado or Bryce Harper, talked about how he had to look not only at the present, but future seasons ahead, too.
"Three, four, five years from now, we got a lot of homegrown kids that we love, our fans love, that are going to be coming up for free agency," Steinbrenner said at the time.
Can the Yanks keep them all, Judge, Gleyber Torres, Gary Sanchez, Miguel Andujar? We'll see.
That's just one of the takeaways from the Severino deal. Here's a look at some others.
Severino, who turns 25 next week, can earn $52.25 million over five years if the Yankees pick up an option that would buy out his first year of free agency. If not, he earns $40 million over four years and hits the market at age 29. He'll earn $26.25 million of the deal before Major League Baseball's collective bargaining agreement ends in December of 2021, which gives him a nifty nest egg if there's a work stoppage.
Could he have earned more money going year-to-year in arbitration? Possibly and that's why some say the Yankees made a team-friendly deal for a pitcher who was 19-8 with a 3.39 ERA last year.
But Severino traded that chance for security. If he suffers a career-altering injury and is never the same, he's still made a pile. He'll never have to worry about money again, unless he adopts an uncharacteristic, new-Lamborghini-a-day lifestyle.
Plus, he only included one year of free agency in the deal, and that's if the Yankees pick up a $15 million option for 2023. Heck, with the way free agency seems to be trending, maybe he and the other pitchers who have signed recent extensions, such as Philadelphia's Aaron Nola, figure they'd better snatch a payday as soon as they can.
The Yanks, meanwhile, secure a two-time All-Star who has been ninth and third in the AL Cy Young voting over the past two seasons for either $10 million per season or slightly more. Severino said he slimmed down over the winter, searching for answers to a second-half slump, so perhaps he's poised to soar even more.
Knowing how much they've spent on that kind of starter helps the Yanks plan for the future when they'll need, say, rotation additions to replace CC Sabathia after this season.
ANY LOCAL RIPPLE EFFECTS?
There's been plenty of extension talk in New York this week, even before Severino got his pact done. Does Jacob deGrom versus the Mets ring a bell?
There likely is no impact from Severino's deal on deGrom, which we'll get to in a moment. Is there a PR impact on the Mets, though? Their crosstown rivals locked up their ace in the same week in which deGrom said he'd have to have a conversation with his agents about potentially limiting his workload to preserve his value if there's no megabucks extension coming.
But since deGrom is much closer to free agency than Severino was when he signed, there's little chance the Severino deal affects him and any future contract. DeGrom, 31 in June, could hit the market after 2020 if he does not hammer out a deal with new GM Brodie Van Wagenen, who used to be deGrom's agent.
DeGrom has a much bigger resume than Severino and is coming off a Cy Young Award, so he's at a much different place in the game's salary structure than Severino, too. The Mets ace is making $17 million this season.
Zack Wheeler, who turns 29 in May, will be a free agent after this season. His proximity to the market makes it unlikely that Severino's deal impacts him, either.
The Mets starter who is the most similar to Severino might be the 26-year-old Noah Syndergaard. He is one year closer to free agency (after 2021) than Severino had been, though, and he's making $6 million this season, so he's starting higher in the salary structure than Severino was.
We'll see if the Severino contract is a road map for the Mets and Syndergaard or if the Mets would compare Thor to Nola, who just signed a four-year deal worth a guaranteed $45 million but gave up two years of free agency.