Yankees: One big roadblock holding up Carlos Rodon signing

carlos rodon, yankees
Sep 29, 2022; San Francisco, California, USA; San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Carlos Rodon (16) pitches during the first inning against the Colorado Rockies at Oracle Park. Mandatory Credit: Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

It is no secret the Yankees have their sights set on starting pitcher Carlos Rodon, who would help build one of the best rotations in the game. Just imagine a unit composed of Gerrit Cole, Rodon, Nestor Cortés, Luis Severino, and Frankie Montas.

Most are concerned that Montas will play below his average with the Oakland Athletics, but if he bounces back after a tough finish to the 2022 season, the Yankees will easily match up with any other rotation in the game.

However, while most MLB analysts believe that Rodon will end up with the Yankees, the two sides have hit a snag late in the process. It seems as if general manager Brian Cashman is willing to give him $30 million per season but doesn’t want to push beyond 4–5 years. According to Buster Olney of ESPN, Rodon wants 6+ years, which is unlikely given the injury history he’s dealt with in the past.

The Yankees are leaning toward building a super-rotation:

Rodon, who turned 30 years old over the weekend, hosted a 2.88 ERA this past season with 2.91 xFIP, 12 strikeouts per nine, and a 75.1% left-on-base rate across 178 innings. This is the first time since 2016 he pitched over 150 innings, pitching just 34.2 in 2019 and 7.2 in 2020.

Putting up consecutive years with over 130 innings is a good sign regarding his health and consistency, but whichever team signs him will have to handle his workload carefully, likely mitigating fatigue down the stretch instead of putting exponential pressure on his arm.

Rodon’s injuries include a sprained wrist, biceps bursitis, shoulder inflammation, and Tommy John surgery that ended his 2019 season after seven starts. Since then, he’s shown a bit more resilience, which is why the Yankees are willing to give him a contract in the 4–5 year range, but trusting him for any length of time beyond that is optimistic at best.

Nonetheless, Carlos is the top starter on the market and would improve the Yankees’ chances at the World Series tenfold, but there is a red line that Cashman isn’t willing to cross.

After signing Aaron Judge to a $360 million deal that will pay him $40 million per year, the Yankees only have so much money to spend moving forward, but it seems as if owner Hal Steinbrenner is willing to go blow for blow with the New York Mets, who are financially unlimited.