2015 Statistics: 47 G, .229/.275/.333, 0 HR, 8 RBI, 64 wRC+
2016 Contract Status: Had a mutual option worth $2 million with a $1 million player option that Ryan has picked up
Towards the end of the 2013 season, the Yankees acquired Brendan Ryan from the Mariners in exchange for a player to be named later. Ryan has long been known for his defensive abilities at shortstop, and he was brought in to backup Derek Jeter who was struggling to recover from his ankle injury. When the season ended, the Yankees brought Ryan back on a deal that paid him a total of $4 million between 2014 and 2015. He started the 2014 season on the disabled list with an oblique strain which morphed into a pinched nerve in his back and neck. The injury kept him sidelined until May and he went on to hit just .167/.211/.202 through 124 plate appearances.
Oddly enough, Ryan also started the 2015 season on the disabled list. First, he somehow managed to pull a muscle in his back while lifting weights during spring training. After that healed, Ryan ended up with a Grade 2 calf strain. While he was down in Florida rehabbing his calf, Ryan pulled a hamstring. He finally made his season debut on June 10th, showing up with a full blown mustache even though the rest of the team had already shaved theirs off. Though Ryan's natural position is shortstop, he also spent time playing first, second, third and right field this season, and even made his pitching debut. He's always been more of a defensive player, but he put up negative UZR/150 numbers for every position except first this year. Ryan had a much better season at the plate compared to 2014, but he was still worth negative fWAR (-0.4).
Ryan elected to pick up his player option, so he is guaranteed $1 million, though the team could still designate him for assignment. Since Stephen Drew is set to leave as a free agent, Ryan looks to be the team's infield utility man. Dustin Ackley could also fill that role, but it looks like he'll be the starting second baseman at this point. At the very least, Ryan is coming back on an incredibly cheap deal. He is known for being a good clubhouse guy, but his defense isn't what it used to be and he's worthless off the bench. Now the Yankees can decide whether they want to keep Ryan around for another year, or they can cut him if a better option comes along during the remainder of the offseason.