Wednesday, October 1, 2014

A Review of the New York Yankees' Free Agent Pitchers

The off-season has begun for the New York Yankees and the team will soon have to choose players to fill out its 2015 roster.  Today I'm taking a look at the five Yankee pitchers who will be free agents and whether or not Brian Cashman should try to keep them in the Bronx.  

Free agent: Chris Capuano
Position: Starting Pitcher
Re-sign?: No
Capuano pitched relatively well during his time as a Yankee, but I don't think the team should re-sign him to another deal.  He put up a 3.85 Fielding Independent Pitching (FIP) in his 65.2 innings in pinstripes, which would be the second-best mark of his career over a full season.  He also turns 37 next August. For a youth-challenged, pitching-strong squad, the $2.25 million he made in 2014 could be used to address another area of need, like putting more bats into the lineup.

Free Agent: Rich Hill
Position: Relief Pitcher
Re-sign?: No
Hill's FIP as a Yankee was 2.01, but he's been up and down throughout his career in the majors.  His FIP has ranged from 5.83 with the 2008 Cubs, to 1.52 in just eight innings with Boston in 2011.  The ERA of infinity which he put up with the Angels this season also scares me, even though he allowed just one earned run in two games as a Halo.

Free Agent: Hiroki Kuroda
Position: Starting Pitcher
Re-sign?: Maybe
Kuroda will turn 40 before the next baseball season starts, and despite his consistency over his seven years in the majors (his FIP has ranged from 3.26 to 3.86 during his time with the Dodgers and Yankees), no one can keep producing forever.  I would guess that with Kuroda's age, no teams will want to match his 2014 price tag of $16 million.  If the Yanks believe he can pitch reasonably well next year, they could possibly re-sign him, though they might want to give him something more like $10 million, at most.

Free Agent: Brandon McCarthy
Position: Starting Pitcher
Re-sign?: Yes
Branny Mac, as I like to call him, had the ninth-best strikeout-to-walk ratio in the majors this season among qualifying pitchers.  By comparison, probable Cy Young candidates Corey Kluber and Chris Sale were tenth and eighth, respectively, in strikeout-to-walk ratio. McCarthy also put up the sixth-best MLB ground-out to air-out ratio among qualifiers and had a FIP of 3.22 as a Yankee.  I'm guessing he'll get a raise from the $10.25 million he made in 2014 but still remain less expensive than high-profile free agents like Jon Lester and Max Scherzer, making him an attractive buy for a Yankee team already neck-deep in huge contracts and needing another bat.

Free Agent: David Robertson
Position: Relief Pitcher
Re-sign?: Yes
The incumbent closer was consistently good in FIP over his last three seasons as a Yankee, with his 2014 mark of 2.68 being his highest FIP over the last three years.  Re-signing him would ensure one of the two best pieces of a thin bullpen (the Yanks were 12th-worst in bullpen ERA among MLB teams this year) would stay in pinstripes for another season.  The downside of re-signing him, of course, would be that his price will likely go up, though I'm unsure whether the Yankees have any comparable talent in the lower levels of the organization.

**Note-All of the information and statistics in this post came from, with the following exceptions:  All comparisons between players or teams using 2014 stats came from; the list of Yankee free agents came from the following story on  

No comments:

Post a Comment