The New York Yankees have made no secret about pursuing a shortstop this offseason, and one of the best free agents is now off the board as Marcus Semien reportedly agreed to sign with the Texas Rangers.
MLB Network's Jon Heyman reports that Semien's deal is for $175 million over seven years. Heyman added that the Yankees showed interest in the 31-year-old, but stopped short of offering a seven-year contract.
Semien spent the 2021 season with the Toronto Blue Jays on a one-year deal and was moved to second base. The position change had no ill effects as he was named to the All-Star Game for the first time in his nine-year career and won his first Gold Glove.
Semien broke Brian Dozier's record for home runs by a second baseman with a career-high 45 dingers, earning him his first Silver Slugger award. The first-team All-MLB selection batted .265/.334/.538 and added career-bests of 102 RBI and 15 stolen bases. He also led the majors with 86 extra-base hits.
Semien finished third in the voting for American League MVP, matching his finish in 2019. He's the only player with two top-three MVP finishes in the past three years.
Semien joins a Rangers team that has finished last in the AL West in each of the past two seasons and hasn't made the playoffs since 2016. His power bat will help boost a lineup that finished 26th in the majors in home runs last year with 167.
When he spoke to reporters in October, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman called shortstop "an area of need" this offseason. Gleyber Torres was moved to second base towards the end of the year due to a disappointing performance and Cashman said he believes Torres is "best served" at that position..
With Semien no longer available, there is still a number of high-quality shortstops available on the open market. Former All-Stars Carlos Correa, Corey Seager, Javier Baez and Trevor Story will surely be among the players the Yankees pursue in free agency.