Yankees Owner Hal Steinbrenner Expects Fans at Yankee Stadium

New York Yankees, Hal Steinbrenner

New York Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner is very optimistic that the Yankees will have some sort of fan presence at Yankee Stadium this year.

In an interview earlier today with YES Network’s Meredith Marakovits, Steinbrenner said, “I do expect to see fans in our stadium at some point to some degree, and that’s going to be a great day as well.” 

He went on to say the stadium will “at first” be 20-30% full. He is confident that management can provide the proper precautions for fans to stay safe in the stadium. 

Teams can create their precautions regarding fans in stadiums. However, Commissioner Rob Manfred must approve them before they can be put into action. 

The MLB put out a statement that read, “The commissioner has made no decisions regarding permitting fans at games. The decision will be based both on whether local health authorities approve fans to attend games and whether our medical advisors believe it is appropriate to do so.”

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has been very vocal about allowing sports venues to hold sporting events but hasn’t talked about allowing fans in attendance. 

The Yankees will stay in their home stadium for workouts and simulated games leading up to July 23rd. From there they will travel to Washington to take on the defending champs in primetime action. 

New York Yankees will join All In Challenge to raise funds in the battle against COVID-19

New York Yankees

Nearly every country in the world has implemented some sort of public health norms to help combat the current coronavirus outbreak that has taken thousands of lives around the planet. United States is the most affected nation from a death toll standpoint. Sports leagues had to suspend their games and halt their operations until further notice. That’s why we haven’t been seeing our beloved New York Yankees in the field lately.

And, as American is doing its best to combat the spread and the effects of the virus in society, the Yankees’ managing general partner Hal Steinbrenner is stepping up and joining the All In Challenge, which would certainly help any fan realize his/her dream.

Actually, Steinbrenner’s initiative to join the All In Challenge is a response from an invitation from former New York Yankees’ shortstop and current Miami Marlins owner Derek Jeter. As a result, Steinbrenner put together a very nice package in which the person winning the auction will be present at a batting practice session of the team.

The person will also throw the ceremonial first pitch before a regular season home game at Yankee Stadium, provided that games can be played there because of the current coronavirus pandemic.

A complete Yankees-centered experience

Also, the winning person will get to take three guests to a game from the premium vantage point of the Legends Club seats, and will also bring home the game lineup card, autographed by Yankees manager Aaron Boone and the members of the starting lineup of that day.

“I absolutely accept Derek Jeter’s challenge. This is an incredible cause,” Steinbrenner said. “There’s been so many people affected by this coronavirus, so many people that need help. The New York Yankees are proud to be part of this.”

Per an MLB.com’s report, “one hundred percent of the money raised by the All In Challenge auction will go directly to Feeding America, Meals on Wheels, World Central Kitchen and No Kid Hungry. The auction will accept bids until May 21.”

In turn, Hal Steinbrenner challenged John W. Henry of the Boston Red Sox, Fred and Jeff Wilpon of the New York Mets and the YES Network to create auction packages of their own.

New York Yankees: A look at contract extensions for Yankee players, what you need to know

New York Yankees fans have wondered from time to time why the Yankees haven’t locked up young talents like Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez, and others.  The answer is likely to surprise fans; it doesn’t have that much to do with the player, it’s the owner.  Plain and straightforward, Yankee owner and managing partner Hal Steinbrenner doesn’t believe in it.  That’s not to be said that it hasn’t been done, but it does suggest why the Yankees engage in contract extensions so seldom.

This past year was an exception.  Aaron Hicks was a season away from free agency at the time, though the outfielder chose to forego the open market in favor of a new contract that paid him $64M in new money through the 2025 season.  Hicks will reportedly receive a $2MM signing bonus in addition to a $6MM salary in 2019 before earning $10.5MM annually from 2020-23 and $9.5MM in 2024-25. The club option is said to be valued at $12.5MM (with a $1MM buyout), and while Hicks doesn’t have any no-trade protection on the deal, he’d receive a $1MM assignment bonus upon being traded.

Ace Luis Severino inked a four-year, $40M deal that covered his four arbitration-eligible years as a Super Two player, and the agreement also contains a $15M club option for the 2023 season, which would have been Severino’s first free-agent year.   The New York Yankee also arranged a contract extension for Aroldis Chapman, the Yankees designated closer.  Chapman declined his opt-out in this contract in favor of a contract extension that will bring him $48 million over three years.  It gives him another $18 million in the last two years of the extended contract.

Going back to Steinbrenner’s dislike for contract extensions, the New York Yankees have only given extensions six times in the last eighteen years.   One was for CC Sabathia, who, like Chapman, waved his opt-out in favor of a $122 million extension in 2011.  Another was the extension for outfielder Brett Gardner who, before his free agency in 2014, accepted a contract extension worth $52 million over four years.  Gardner also just signed a new contract that will keep him a Yankee for another two years. The last year of his new contract includes an opt-out and buy out.

The main reason for Hal Steinbrenner’s distaste for extensions is that all of baseball remains so fluid these days.  The market for free agents continually changes from year to year and avoiding extensions tends to give the club more options on a yearly basis. An example of that is that if fans got their way last year and the Yankees locked up Judge, Sanchez, and Andujar to long term contracts, It would have most likely not have allowed the Yankees to go out during this offseason and acquire Gerrit Cole for $324 million over the next nine years.

Back in 2010 Steinbrenner in an interview with the Associated Press, he shed light on the subject:

“I just don’t believe in contract extensions, and that’s throughout the organization, no matter who it is.  Hopefully nobody takes that personally. It’s just business.”

He also added that it’s just against company policy.   Some good examples supporting that is when star player Derek Jeter came up for an extension, it wasn’t offered.  Instead, Jeter went into free agency and eventually signed a new contract after some hard negotiations.  The same is true of superstar closer Mariano Rivera he went onto the open market before signing a new contract with the Yankees.

During this offseason, the Yankees not only did not offer any contract extension but did not take up any of the player’s options, instead negotiating with them separately for new contracts.  Don’t look for the New York Yankees to be issuing any contract extensions in the near future, especially to Aaron Judge or Gary Sanchez, who both have long term injury issues.  If there is another exception to the rule, that would most likely be issued to DJ LeMahieu last year’s MVP, who will become a free agent after this season.

In the case of James Paxton and Masahiro Tanaka, both who are aging, it is likely that any new contract that the Yankees make with them will be made after the season has concluded if there is a baseball season this year.



New York Yankees News: Yankees to get partial pay while not playing: Find out more!

New York Yankees, Hal Steinbrenner

New York Yankee players will receive partial play while not playing ball due to the coronavirus shortened season.  The MLB and the Players Association have come to an agreement according to Ken Rosenthal of the Atlantic.  The players have agreed to the proposal as of last night and the owners will vote on it Today.

Here are the main points of the deal, according to Rosenthal and ESPN’s Jeff Passan.

The New York Yankees will give players a salary advance of $170 million for April and May and the players will keep the money if fears over COVID-19 force MLB to cancel the whole season, Passan said. That means Gerrit Cole, Giancarlo Stanton, Aaron Judge, and other Yankees will get paid for the first two months of what would have been the regular season. Rosenthal said the money would be split among four tiers of players, from those with guaranteed deals to players with major league and minor-league splits. It’s unclear how the pie will be split, though it seems likely that the players with the guaranteed deals would get the biggest shares.

  1. New York Yankees Salaries will pro-rated over the length of the remaining season, Rosenthal said. Owners would have been on the hook for $4.5 billion in salaries in 2020 if the full season was canceled and full salaries were paid.

  2. The amateur draft will be five rounds but could go longer if MLB wants, and it won’t happen any later than July.

  3. New York Yankee players will get full-service time if the season isn’t played at all. That means Yankees, who are set to become free agents after this season — such as James Paxton and Masahiro Tanaka would still be able to sign elsewhere without playing in the final years of their deals. Another interesting example: The Red Sox traded Mookie Betts to the Dodgers in the offseason. Betts is set to become a free agent after the 2020 season. It’s entirely possible that the season could get canceled and that Betts would have never played a single game for L.A.

  4. There hasn’t been a decision yet on the length of the new spring training or whether rosters will get expanded to start the season, Rosenthal reported.

New York Yankee principal owner Hal Steinbrenner and all of the other MLB owners to which this deal applies will vote today and will likely approve the deal so that players can be paid and yet the owners don’t get hammered while the season remains undetermined.


The two biggest changes the Yankees made this offseason

New York Yankees, Aaron Boone, Gerrit Cole

The 2019 season proved that the New York Yankees have the talent to win a World Series, but their lack of run support in the ALCS held them back from the ultimate goal. Timeliness and momentum played a significant part in the demise of the team late in the season. Still, they sought to address the deficiencies this offseason, starting with the starting pitching rotation.

Owner Hal Steinbrenner gave GM Brian Cashman the green light to explore every avenue in free agency, and the team elected to spend a big chunk of their money in one spot — Gerrit Cole. Steinbrenner signed off on a nine-year, $324 deal to feature as the Yankees’ ace, alongside Luis Severino, James Paxton, and others.

That was the first significant change the Yankees brought upon themselves to help supplement a lack of starting pitching support last season and the 63-game suspension to Domingo German.

However, the second change might have been the most significant of all, and that was the overhaul of the strength and conditioning program.

How did the New York Yankees address their injury issues?

In 2019, 30 Yankee players spent 39 separate stints on the injured list. Multiple players were forced to miss virtually the entire season, putting reserve players in positions to start and make significant impacts on the team’s success. The Bombers still managed to scrape 103 wins out of an injury-riddled campaign.

Last month, the Yanks fired their strength and conditioning coach, Matt Krause, after spending six seasons with the club. A lot of the injuries seemed to be soft-tissue issues that emerged with over-use, but the increasing amount couldn’t be ignored.

The Athletic’s Lindsay Adler reported that the Yankees would hire Eric Cressey to take Krause’s place. Cressey is highly regarded in the industry and is expected to make sweeping changes across the regimen. Having worked with All-Star pitchers Noah Syndergaard, Corey Kluber, and Max Scherzer, Cressey will work closely with Gerrit Cole to ensure his health.

The Yankees’ longtime athletic trainer Stevie Donohue will also be moved to a different role after serving in the same position since 1986. Keeping him was a loyal move by the Steinbrenners, but changes needed to be made.

New York Yankees news, rumors: Is Deivi Garcia trade bait? Miguel Andujar health update

New York Yankees, Deivi Garcia

Trade proposals will be frequent this offseason, especially with New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman acquiring the green light to pursue all players. Owner Hal Steinbrenner is keen on bringing home a World Series title within the next two years, which attests to the massive Gerrit Cole contract. However, the Yanks still have a few holes on the roster that need to be plugged.

Losing both Dellin Betances and Nestor Cortes Jr. has opened up a void in the bullpen, one that could be filled by home-grown talents like Michael King or Deivi Garcia, but it seems as if Brewers’ Josh Hader entices Cashman. He has been extending different valued offers for the star relief arm, but the Brewers are reportedly asking for far too much — Miguel Andujar, Clint Frazier, and a prospect.

More news and rumors from the New York Yankees:

The idea of floating Deivi Garcia as trade bait is something to consider, as his value might be higher now than it will be down the line. Realistically, Garcia, who’s the Yankees’ No. 1 pitching prospect, is a bit undersized, and some believe he’s a long-shot to develop into an ace. If that’s the conclusion Cashman comes to by word of his developmental agents, including him in a deal should be on the table.

Including the three pieces mentioned above for Hader, though, shouldn’t be an option. The Brewers should have their pick of Andujar or Frazier and potentially Garcia. Adding Hader to the mix would bring a 25-year-old pitcher in his prime with four years of team control remaining on his deal to the Bronx. His services would inevitably give the Yankees the advantage they need to make a serious run at the World Series in 2020.

Jon Heyman: Yankees remain interested in Josh Hader and could begin a package with 3B Miguel Andujar (Brewers don’t really have a set 3B). Interested teams still aren’t totally convinced Milwaukee would move the star closer though.

MLB Marathon: As previously reported, the #Yankees and #Brewers are talking Josh Hader trade. Increasingly likely Hader ends up in the Bronx.

Click here for yesterday’s news/rumors!

Could the New York Yankees dangle Deivi Garcia as trade bait?

New York Yankees, Deivi Garcia

The New York Yankees don’t seem to be finished with their 2020 offseason wish-list, especially as talks with Josh Hader of the Brewers progress. With third baseman Miguel Andujar developing into a trade option, it boils down to prospects and who the Yanks are willing to part with if they’re keen on adding one of the best relief arms in baseball.

In a tentative deal with Hader, trading away No. 1 pitching prospect Deivi Garcia makes complete sense, as the value of his abilities could be reaching a peak. The transition from minor leagues to the MLB is not always a successful one, ask Chance Adams, who was just traded to the Kansas City Royals. The Yanks also sent Justus Sheffield, their expected top farm dog, to the Mariners in exchange for James Paxton, who was a serviceable starter in 2019.

The New York Yankees could dip into their prospect farm:

Sometimes, utilizing youth talent in trades is the best way to upgrade any given position immediately, rather than having to wait several years to use their services in a meaningful way. Garcia is still at least one year from playing a significant role for the Yankees, and at 21-years-old, there’s no reason to rush him to the top, especially after the signing of Gerrit Cole, arguably the league’s best pitcher.

The Bombers are in a fantastic position to make a serious run at a World Series title in 2020, and adding valuable pieces that can contribute towards a successful campaign is essential. The Yankees haven’t reached the World Series in a decade, which attests to owner Hal Steinbrenner’s enthusiastic attitude this offseason. General manager Brian Cashman was given the green light to pursue all talent, and this subsequently opens the door up for trading Garcia, who has dominated in the minor system at times.

Last year, Garcia jumped from A-Class ball to AAA in three months, making him the youngest pitcher to climb the system in the Yankees’ ranks. With a stacked starting rotation and adequate bullpen, if Cashman sees any weaknesses that could become problematic, Garcia could be a valuable commodity in a potential deal.


Yankees could make trade that would send Giancarlo Stanton to the DH spot

New York Yankees, Kyle Schwarber, Chicago Cubs

The New York Yankees have had eager ears this offseason in search of instrumental pieces to bolster their team to ultimately propel themselves to the first World Series appearance in over a decade. The 2020 season is already held in high regard considering the behemoth signing of Gerrit Cole for nine-years, $324 million.

Owner Hal Steinbrenner and GM Brian Cashman have made it apparent they’re willing to drop their checkbook like a mic after a perfect comedy skit. The latest potential trade involves Chicago Cubs’ Kyle Schwarber, whose defensive issues are well documented, despite his quality offensive abilities.

Realistically, Schwarber has one characteristic that makes him an appealing option for the Bombers — he’s a slugger. The outfielder hit .250/.339/.531 with 38 homers and 29 doubles in 155 games last season. Replacing Edwin Encarnacion is a priority for the Yankees, who desire a productive home run hitter to slot in at the designated hitter position.

Alternatively, manager Aaron Boone could slide Giancarlo Stanton into the DH spot and utilize Schwarber in left field while Aaron Judge remains steady in right field and Brett Gardner holds down center in the absence of Aaron Hicks.

What would it take for the Yankees to land the 26-year-old?

The Cubs won’t let their top home run hitter go without receiving a promising package in return, which is where Miguel Andujar enters into the scenario. After missing all of 2019 with a torn labrum, Andujar is preparing to return and compete for the starting third base position.

With Gio Urshela already expected to start on the hot corner in 2020, Andujar has an uphill battle ahead of him. However, the Yankees could look to shop him in the coming weeks to add an essential power hitter to the lineup, a factor that has served them well in recent years.

This would also allow Stanton to focus on his hitting consistency rather than risking injury in the outfield. For the money the Yankees are paying, primarily for his offensive production, it makes sense to take the caution for injury out of the equation. Shwarber also adds a lefty bat to a predominantly righty hitting order.

New York Yankees: An unlikely hero came to the rescue to sign Gerrit Cole

New York Yankees, Gerrit Cole

The New York Yankees began the 2020 offseason with a bang, signing star pitcher Gerrit Cole to a nine-year, $324 million deal with an out after five years. This guarantees him $36 million per season, shattering Stephen Strasburg’s deal in stature.

However, the path the Yankees took to get to the finish line was unconventional, as they pulled out all the stops to lure Cole to the Bronx. They dipped into their pool of former players; guys Cole looked up to while growing up. Andy Pettite played a massive part in selling the Bomber’s culture to his family and giving him a reason to believe he can win multiple Championship wearing Pinstripes.

The New York Yankees used their biggest piece to solve the puzzle:

While Pettite did play a significant part in inking the deal, owner Hal Steinbrenner was the catalyst behind it all. Before the offseason began, Hal was reluctant to admit the starting pitching rotation needed reinforcements. Still, it seems GM Brian Cashman convinced him Cole would take the team to a different level, and the amount of money he would spend would be paid back 10-fold in Championship runs. Ten years without a World Series appearance can be troublesome for such a historic franchise.

“If the 2020 season was to start tomorrow, I would feel considerably more confident than I did a year ago at this time,’’ Steinbrenner said. “We will have both Severino and Montgomery back. We now know that [Domingo] German can pitch effectively at this level. And we know [James] Paxton can be the guy that we were hoping for when we made that trade. We have [Masahiro] Tanaka, [J.A.] Happ, [Jonathan] Loaisiga, and perhaps [Deivi] Garcia at some point. A very good rotation.’’

“We’re going to be active in the free agent market. I like our rotation right now. As of now, I like our 2020 rotation better than I liked our 2019 rotation…

About one month later, Steinbrenner was playing a pivotal role in bringing Cole the New York after his evasion in 2008 and 2017. An unlikely hero in the negotiations, but one that will go down in history, nonetheless.

New York Yankees to offer way more than initially expected for Gerrit Cole

New York Yankees, Gerrit Cole

The initial offer from the New York Yankees to acquire star pitcher Gerrit Cole this off-season was seven-years, $245 million. It was expected that making him the highest-paid pitcher in baseball at $35 million per year would be enough to lure his services to the Bronx. However, the Washington Nationals blindsided everyone and signed Stephen Strasburg to the same deal that was initially offered to Cole.

Strasburg’s new contract completely revitalizes the pitching market, and Cole will ultimately benefit from this record-breaking deal. It is not often you see two record-breaking agreements in the same off-season, but considering Cole is two years younger than Strasburg and has a clean bill of health, it is fair to say he will earn upwards of $300 million on a multi-year deal.

The New York Yankees must hate Scott Boras right now:

The real hero for Gerrit Cole and his family is super-agent Scott Boras, who waited until Strasburg received his contract details to obliterate the Yankees’ expected offerings. With owner Hal Steinbrenner giving general manager Brian Cashman the green light to acquire a Cole at any cost, the Nationals allowance likely has the next generation of Steinbrenner’s trembling in his skin.

To put some perspective on how much money Cole is about to earn, he could theoretically buy 4.6 G6 private jets with the amount of money he will haul in throughout his anticipated deal. That is an astronomical amount of cash that will set him and his family up for the next ten generations.

However, it is well earned. At 29 years old, the former Houston Astro‘s ace logged a 2.50 ERA, with 326 strikeouts, and a 0.895 WHIP in 2019. He is considered the best pitcher in Major League Baseball, and if the Yankees manage to sign him, their probability of making it to the World Series in 2020 skyrockets. This is an achievement the Yankees have evaded for the last decade with Hal at the helm.

Predicted offering:

Yankees — eight years, $320 million (out after five years)