So the Yankees gave me a nice birthday gift. Okay, they didn’t know my birthday is on December 10th but they did sign Gerrit Cole to a record breaking deal of $324 million for nine years. This broke Stephen Strasburg’s contract which is $245 million for seven years.
First reaction was “holy crap! That is a lot of money!” but then I quickly realized that if you want a player like Cole on your team, you need to pay a lot and that money is worth it during the best years of the contract. He has an opt-out after the fifth year which, if he takes, would mean the Yankees would have taken advantage of his best years of his career before he “declines”. I know the amount of years scares some fans but again, it’s the price you pay for wanting a player like Cole. Had the Yankees not give him a great offer and he signed elsewhere because of the years (remember Patrick Corbin last year), then those same Yankees fans would be mad and keep calling Hal Steinbrenner cheap because he didn’t want to commit to the years. The Steinbrenners and Cashman can never win with Yankees fans.
So what would the rotation look like?
Gerrit Cole, Luis Severino, Masahiro Tanaka, James Paxton and J.A. Happ. You can use Jordan Montgomery or Domingo German as the fifth starter if Happ is traded. I rather stick with Montgomery because it brings another lefty in the rotation and he would have time to show he deserves that spot while German is serving his suspension for domestic violence. Adding Cole allows you to not have to go to the bullpen so often as well. He gives you great length and can hand the ball to Britton or Chapman every fifth day. He is going to have bad days because, shocker, he is human but that doesn’t lessen the worth of his contract. If Cole decides to opt-in after the 2024 season, then the Yankees can hope for at least 80 percent of what Cole is now and it still wouldn’t lessen the worth of his contract.
Yankees have tried to acquire Cole twice before. First time was by drafting him and he declined to attend UCLA. The second time was in a trade with the Pirates and he ended up being traded to the Astros. This time, the Yankees did everything they can to make sure he will be pitching on Opening Day as a Yankee and succeeded. Should be exciting seeing him pitch every fifth day for the Bronx.
Image from @yankees