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The baseball world reacts to Luis Severino’s contract extension

Let’s take a pulse of the buzz surrounding the Yankee ace’s deal.

MLB: ALDS-Boston Red Sox at New York Yankees Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

Spring is here, which means the first glimpses of the 2019 Yankees are coming into focus. After an up-and-down 2018 campaign, Luis Severino reported to camp and was looking sharp off the initial fastball pops into Gary Sanchez’ glove.

Though he looked like a Cy Young candidate in the first half of last season, Severino struggled mightily on the back nine. Theories swirled, suggesting that his inconsistencies came from him tipping pitches, but he found that a different villain was to blame: fried plantains.

With a new training regiment, he’s heading into the 2019 season looking to return to his true ace form. It wasn’t all sunshine and vegetables though, because although he’s feeling lighter, arbitration was still casting a shadow of looming darkness over the beginning of his season. That cleared up Friday morning as reports came in that the top-of-the-rotation pitcher had agreed to an extension with the Yankees worth $40 million over four years, with a $12 million option for a fifth season.

It appeared that Severino would be STICKING AROUND, but before the extension was confirmed, Manager Aaron Boone chimed in to offer an impassioned take on his young star.

After passing a physical, the deal became official, meaning Luis Severino will be a Yankee through his 20s, reaching free agency at age 30.

Pinstripe Alley’s Josh Diemert offered his thoughts on how the deal proves mutually beneficial for the Yankees and Severino. The team, for example, gains financial flexibility while still locking down a young talent during the years leading to his prime. Severino, on the other hand, avoids the tough process of arbitration while making a pretty penny. It also leaves him room to sign a free agent deal at a young enough age that will yield nice results.

An interesting wrinkle of this deal is how the impending work stoppage, the one looming when the MLB Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) expires in 2021, affected the financial breakdown per year. Jeff Passan and Ken Rosenthal were quick to point out that this deal is front-loaded to protect Severino and his earnings against a possible strike on the back half.

Of course, it wouldn’t be a complete MLB offseason day without discussion of the ever-popular luxury tax. Interestingly enough, the Yankees’ ability to stay under the threshold could seed longterm success with their crop of young talent. The Yankee brass was more willing than normal to spend during arbitration, which could signal to players like Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez that the team is willing to negotiate and invest in a long-term future with their players.

Aside from all the financial talk, some just wanted to look at the historical positives. For instance, the Yankees are pretty damn good when Severino takes the mound.

And, as recent history shows, any time they have spent on extensions before free agency, the results have been phenomenal.

How did Severino react? Pretty well, I’d say.

All-in-all, this deal is a success. It allows Severino to enter the 2019 season focused on his craft without the cloud of arbitration hanging over his head. It also pays him his dues and keeps him in pinstripes without hindering his longterm financial future. On the flip side, the Yankees keep their ace where he belongs without breaking the bank, while showing some good faith business practices that could play nicely when some of their other young stars’ times come. Not a bad way to enter the weekend. Get that man a victory fried plantain.