The Yankees are on the verge of handing outfielder Brett Gardner a four-year, $52 million extension that would begin in 2015, according to Jack Curry of the YES Network. The deal includes a fifth year option worth $12.5 million or a $2 million buyout. Maybe watching the Braves extend half their team this offseason inspired the Yankees to break away from their tradition of allowing their players to test free agency.
After the Yankees signed Jacoby Ellsbury to a long term deal this offseason, it looked as though Gardner's days in New York were numbered. His services wouldn't be needed as a center fielder and the Yankees could have easily felt that his skill set was redundant with the addition of Ellsbury. It seems now like those thoughts were unfounded with the Yankees willing to keep him in the Bronx for years to come. Brian Cashman has been a huge advocate of Gardner's and wasn't willing to trade him for just anything, most notably Brandon Phillips this offseason, even after his role on the team had become a little less clear moving past this season.
When Gardner's name came up in trade talks, Yankees executives were adamant about how much they valued him. This deal proves it.— Jack Curry (@JackCurryYES) February 23, 2014
What do you think of the decision to extend Gardner? More importantly, do you think this signals a change in the way the Yankees do business with regards to extensions? If so, who should be next?
Deal is done.
Gardner deal 1st mentioned by @JackCurryYES who says 4 yrs. Done deal.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS) February 23, 2014