The Hot Stove season is a glorious time of year, ranging from Winter Meetings to free agency and trades. However, another process the Yankees and their players have to go through is arbitration; a player under team control combines figures with the front office to agree on a one-year contract for the next season. However, not all cases are handled smoothly and some actually reach the point of seeing an arbitrator, who then decides how much a player is to receive the following year.
MLB Trade Rumors has been making accurate projections regarding arbitration for the last six years, and they recently released their projected arbitration salaries for nine Yankees going into the offseason. The number in parentheses represents the playing time, and in order to calculate the projections, they used the $508K Major League minimum salary as a guide. Here are the nine Yankees entering arbitration this winter:
Michael Pineda (5.099): $7.8MM
Dustin Ackley (5.087): $3.2MM
Nathan Eovaldi (5.013): $7.5MM
Adam Warren (4.031): $2.3MM
Didi Gregorius (3.159): $5.1MM
Dellin Betances (3.078): $3.4MM
Austin Romine (3.045): 900K
Aaron Hicks (3.041): $1.4MM
Tommy Layne (2.139): $1.2MM
After reviewing the projections, we’re now going to comb through each player and determine whether the each player would receive their arbitration figure or find themselves non-tendered.
There’s no doubt the Yankees are going to come to an agreement with Pineda. But given the year Pineda had last season, the salary figure should be a little lower than $7.8 Million.
Ackley has missed most of the season after undergoing shoulder surgery, so I would expect him to get less than his $3.2 Million projected figure. However, there’s also a possibility that Ackley is non-tendered given the Major League ready talent the Yankees currently have in the farm system.
Given that Eovaldi can’t pitch during the 2017 season, there’s a 90% chance that Eovaldi will be non-tendered. However, it doesn’t mean the Yankees wouldn’t re-sign him with hopes he’d be healthy in 2018.
It’s almost a given the Yankees sign Adam Warren for next season, especially after they re-acquired him in the middle of the season, which leads me to believe he’ll get approximately what the projection suggests.
With the season Gregorius had at shortstop, it’s also a possibility the Yankees and Gregorius agree on a number close to the arbitration projection.
The Yankees are planning on giving Betances a slight raise after another strong season in the Yankees bullpen. And with Betances under team control, it’s safe to say the Yankees are getting their elite reliever for an absolute steal.
With the Yankees carrying three catchers on the roster at the moment, it’s up in the air on what the team will do with Romine. Romine could be non-tendered, or the Yankees and Romine could agree to approximately $900k should the Yankees decide to trade Brian McCann.
The Yankees have already made it clear that they were going to keep Hicks for next season, so I believe he’ll get around the $1.4 Million projected.
Unless the Yankees pull off a trade and send Layne elsewhere, it’s possible he receives the $1.2 Million projected.