Yankees Rumors: Gio Gonzalez Offered Contract; NY Isn't Optimistic About Talks

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistMarch 17, 2019

LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 16:  Pitcher Gio Gonzalez #47 of the Milwaukee Brewers pitches during the first inning of Game Four of the National League Championship Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on October 16, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

The New York Yankees made a contract offer to free-agent starting pitcher Gio Gonzalez, according to MLB Network's Jon Heyman.

However, Heyman added there isn't "a great deal of optimism at moment" while clarifying the two sides could eventually work out their differences.

Splitting his time with the Washington Nationals and Milwaukee Brewers, Gonzalez finished 10-11 with a 4.21 ERA and a 4.16 FIP in 32 starts, per FanGraphs. He averaged 7.79 strikeouts and 4.21 walks per nine innings, both of which were noticeably worse than 2017 (8.42 and 3.54, respectively).

The 33-year-old left-hander is arguably the second-best starting pitcher still available on the free-agent market, though. 

The Yankees are in need of another starter with Luis Severino sidelined. General manager Brian Cashman confirmed the team doesn't expect Severino back until at least May, per the New York Post's Dan Martin.

When Severino's right shoulder inflammation was revealed earlier this month, MLB.com's Mark Feinsand floated Gonzalez as a possible target for the Yankees. 

Feinsand argued Gonzalez made more sense than Dallas Keuchel since Keuchel is still looking to sign a multiyear deal. MLB Network's Jon Morosi reported in December the 2015 American League Cy Young winner wanted a five-year contract.

This deep into the offseason, the Yankees would seemingly have more leverage than Gonzalez. The longer New York waits, though, the more time Gonzalez could miss to open the regular season. The team will want to get him into spring training as quickly as possible with Opening Day (March 28) right around the corner.