After Patrick Corbin signed with the Nationals on Monday, a rumor floated that the Yankees had offered the left-hander a deal for five years and $100 million. The Phillies were said to have made an offer around that number too. Well, according to Jack Curry, the Bombers never made an official offer at all.
“They told him they’d be comfortable [with] 4 or 5 years for $17M to $20M per year. So $100M was floated. When Corbin said he was seeking ‘[Yu] Darvish money,’ NY didn’t make offer.”
Now, I understand not wanting to lock Corbin into a six year deal, or wanting to pay him $140 million. A lot of Pinstripe Alley readers are happy that the Yankees didn’t get into a bidding war with the Nationals or hand out this contract. At the end of the day, though, Corbin was the top free agent pitcher available. Sometimes you have to overpay in order to lock up the best talent out there.
The Yankees seem to be talking out of both sides of their mouths. On the one hand, Brian Cashman said just a few weeks ago, “I’ve got to get two starters in here, preferably elite, which those lists are smaller,” the Yankees GM explained. “But the better quality -- No. 1-, 2- or 3-type starter -- that’s what we need. So I need multiples of those.”
Corbin wouldn’t have been the team’s ace. However, he fit the bill for the other “elite” arm that Cashman is supposedly looking for...and the Yankees didn’t even make an official offer? That makes no sense. The whole reason the Yankees stayed under the luxury tax threshold was to reset it, so now is the time to spend that money.
The fact that they didn’t even make a formal offer says a lot, and doesn’t inspire much confidence looking ahead to the Winter Meetings. It’s easy to imagine Manny Machado and Bryce Harper naming their price and the Yankees not even engaging.
The list of available free agent starting pitchers continues to shrink now that Nathan Eovaldi has signed with the Red Sox for four years and $67.5 million. The Yankees supposedly aren’t interested in giving J.A. Happ the years that he would like, either. Is Cashman’s idea of two “elite” arms James Paxton and Lance Lynn? That’s awful.
Unless Cashman has a big trade for Corey Kluber coming, it’s hard to imagine any scenario where the rotation ends up being as good as it would have been if they had added Corbin.