Yankees’ Luis Severino eyeing big contract extension

luis severino, yankees
Sep 21, 2022; Bronx, New York, USA; New York Yankees starting pitcher Luis Severino (40) follows through on a pitch against the Pittsburgh Pirates during the first inning at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

This is easily the most important year of Luis Severino’s career. The homegrown Yankees product knows that it being a contract year, he has to leave it all on the bump. One of the more talented arms, Sevy has unfortunately had to battle injuries the past few seasons, thus putting even more pressure on this year being a good one. 

“It’s my free agency year,” Severino told The Athletic on Friday. “It has to be my most important year.”

Luis Severino to The Athletic

He knows the importance of putting together a full season in pinstripes. His future with the organization rests on him doing well and, hopefully, the team choosing to extend him. A healthy Severino is a weapon not many teams have, and he’s certainly become an underrated arm, if anything. When he’s on, he’s on, and his warrior-esque demeanor leads to him always pitching with his emotions on his sleeve. 

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Luis Severino needs to stay healthy, and the organization needs to trust him:

Prior to being shut down and tossed on the 60-day IL last season, Sevy was on a roll. The team elected to play it safe by shutting him down for longer than necessary, but this year there should be no innings limit or pitch count worries. Last season he tossed 102.0 innings, which was the most he’s logged since 2018, when he threw 191.0 innings. He posted a 9.88 K/9, to go with a 2.65 BB/9, as he saw his hard work culminate to a fantastic year overall. Sevy finished with a 3.18 ERA and a 3.70 FIP, and his xERA of 2.94 shows that he got a bit unlucky. 

If he’s able to even replicate last season’s worth of production, over, say 160 or so innings, Severino will certainly see an extension headed his way. I can imagine that the Yankees want to hang onto someone that’s spent his entire career with them, and Severino is easily one of the Yanks’ best hits in recent years. Being able to pitch is the biggest key for Sevy, and him staying healthy could mean mutually great things for both the organization and him. 

The rotation is only as elite as it is productive:

The Yankees know the importance of having a dominant and healthy rotation come October, and this year is no different. Even with the Carlos Rodon acquisition, it’s still pivotal that the back end of the rotation is healthy and firing on all cylinders. With the great news that Nestor Cortes shouldn’t miss really any time with his hamstring issue, it means the 1-4 should be ready to rock come Opening Day. Severino is just one of the pieces of the grand puzzle, and his role on the team looks to be even more important, with Montas missing the entire season due to his shoulder injury. 

Assuming Severino can go out on the bump and make 25+ starts this year, that will mean he can sign the contract to keep him in pinstripes for the foreseeable future. Having a rotation with him, Rodon, Cole, and Nestor could be one of the most dominant in baseball for many years to come. It all rests on his shoulders, and should the performance correlate with the production, he may even be a sneaky Cy Young contender.

Just a few years ago, he logged back-to-back 190-inning years and was in the running in both seasons (2017 & ‘18). I can see a great year for Sevy brewing, and hopefully, he gets off to a hot start and doesn’t look back.