Fresh off bringing one member of their 2014 squad back for next year in third baseman Chase Headley, the Yankees have also brought back another player, though he comes with much less fanfare. Chris Capuano, who the Yankees acquired mid-season to bolster their injury-ravaged starting rotation, has re-signed for a one-year, $5 million contract. Capuano was released by the Red Sox on July 1st of this year, and after the Rockies signed him to a minor league deal on July 4th, the Yankees picked him up about three weeks later. Now, he'll be putting the pinstripes back on in 2015, according to the YES Network's Jack Curry:
Chris Capuano is returning to the Yankees on a 1-year deal. Trying to get additional contract details.— Jack Curry (@JackCurryYES) December 16, 2014
Capuano will get $5M on the 1-year deal. Back-end-of the rotation type who has also relieved.— Jack Curry (@JackCurryYES) December 16, 2014
Curry also noted that it was a move that offered "depth and versatility." That has to be what the Yankees were going for with this move, since the 36-year-old Capuano is certainly not a guy who is going to push them over the top at this point in his career. In 40 games, 12 starts, and 97 1/3 total innings in 2014 split with Boston and New York, Capuano pitched to a mediocre 4.25 ERA and 3.91 FIP, marks that hovered almost exactly around league average (though the ERA was about 10% worse).
It's hard to knock a one-year signing for not much money, so I don't have too many complaints regarding the deal since I don't really think much of the Yankees #4 and #5 starting rotation slots at the moment, and Capuano at least offers an alternative to more David Phelps. However, it's still underwhelming, and I have to hope the Yankees will at least add one serviceable starter to the rotation if they're not going to get Max Scherzer. Capuano is hardly inspiring, and I'm not convinced that his 12 starts indicate he's actually league average. My guess is that this was a move made in case Hiroki Kuroda decides to not return or retire, as I'd certainly prefer Kuroda to Capuano, but if he hasn't made up his mind yet, this at least gives the Yankees another option. They should certainly still try to get Kuroda to return, though.
So, yeah. Get excited for more Capuano tongue in 2015. Woo.