Yankees Rumors: Gio Gonzalez, NYY Agree to 1-Year, $3M Minor League Contract
The New York Yankees have reportedly agreed to a deal with free-agent pitcher Gio Gonzalez, according to Bob Nightengale of USA Today.
Gonzalez will be on a minor league pact, but he would make $3 million if he makes the major league roster. MLB Network's Jon Heyman added Gonzalez will earn $300,000 for every start he makes with the Yankees, giving the contract a maximum value of $12 million.
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic also reported it would be an incentive-laden contract that would add money based on games started. The pitcher would also have an opportunity to opt out on April 20 if he doesn't reach the majors.
The 33-year-old was on the open market much longer than he likely would have hoped with Opening Day less than two weeks away. There was interest during the offseason, but he was reportedly seeking a multiyear deal, per Andy Martino of SNY.tv.
He clearly didn't get his wish, but he now has a chance to make an impact for an elite team.
According to OddsShark, the Yankees are tied with the Boston Red Sox and Houston Astros for the best odds to win the World Series at 6-1.
Still, the rotation remains a bit of a question mark going into the year. Ace Luis Severino is likely out until May with a shoulder injury, while CC Sabathia might also take some time to reach full strength after a heart procedure.
Masahiro Tanaka, James Paxton and J.A. Happ have also dealt with injury problems in recent years.
Gonzalez can take advantage of the thin pitching staff and earn a spot in the rotation.
The two-time All-Star is coming off a strong finish to last season, posting a 3-0 record and 2.13 ERA in five starts with the Milwaukee Brewers after an August trade from the Washington Nationals. While consistency is a bit of an issue, he has posted an ERA below 4.00 in seven out of the last nine years.
He also earned Cy Young votes as recently as 2017.
If he can play to his ability, this could be a steal of a signing for the Yankees.