On the first day of the winter meetings, the New York Yankees have agreed with free-agent outfielder and seven-time all-star Matt Holliday on a one year deal worth 13 million dollars. Holiday will serve as the DH unless a trade of Brett Gardner happens. Even then Holiday will most likely serve as the full-time DH and the Yankees will either look internally or on the FA market for another outfielder. Holliday could also serve as the emergency first basemen if that is ever needed.
With announcing this deal, the Yankees will also no longer go after Edwin Encarnacion, who was projected to get near 100 million dollars.
Holiday is coming off 2 down years, despite being elected into the 2015 all-star game. Over the last two years, he was limited to 183 games because of injuries, leading to a triple slash line of .259/.350/.442 with 24 homers and 97 RBI’s.
After being traded to the Cards in 2009, Holliday quickly felt right at home by hitting .353 with 13 homers and 55 RBI’s in only 63 games. Holliday then went on to hit .295/.383/.879 with 119 homers and 464 RBI’s and was selected to 3 all-star appearances in the next 5 seasons following the 2009 trade.
Holliday serves as low-risk, high reward option for the Yankees who are in the middle of an awkward rebuild. The bombers are currently trying to get younger and reduce payroll while still remaining competitive. If Holliday can find his all-star self then the Yankees have a bargain and have a better chance of contending, but if he remains hurt and continues to decline, then it’s only a one year deal and then the Yanks are not hurt financially and can move on.
This deal does help promote the idea that the Brian Cashman & Co. are saving money for after the 2018 season. By going the cheaper route they are showing they want to save the money for who? Bryce Harper? Manny Machado? If the rumors are true, the Yankees offense will be scary in a few seasons.