Will the Yankees sign Blake Snell to a contract worth hundreds of millions of dollars?

Offseason rumors have been swirling incessantly regarding a potential deal between the New York Yankees and free agent pitcher Blake Snell.

Writing for NBC Sports Chicago, Peter Marzano predicted Snell would opt for a long-term deal with the Yankees, ultimately agreeing to six years at $150 million.

“The Yankees do seem to be a team that will eventually open the checkbook for Snell,” Marzano noted. “Battling in perhaps baseball’s most competitive division after already making a blockbuster move to acquire Juan Soto, the Bronx Bombers may feel like adding another Cy Young Award-winner to their rotation … could be the knockout punch needed to emerge as the team to beat in the division.”

Yankees ace Gerrit Cole addressed the potential of such a deal while accepting his 2023 American League Cy Young Award, seated as he was next to Snell, who was accepting the National League’s counterpart.

USA Today MLB Insider Bob Nightengale reported that the Yankees made Snell a six-year, $150 million offer in January, and noted in a follow up report that they were waiting to see if his asking price would drop or if he’d opt for a $25 million annual salary on a shorter-term deal.

Blake Snell Would Put Two Aces Up the New York Yankees’ Sleeve

Winning the second Cy Young of his career in 2023, Snell saw a 2.25 ERA and 234 strikeouts in 180 innings. Those stellar numbers gave him a career 3.20 ERA and 1,223 strikeouts in eight MLB seasons.

He can lead a rotation for almost any MLB team, but would ultimately be a second fiddle to Cole, who pitched for a 2.63 ERA and 222 strikeouts last season.

Snell may be lingering on the free agent market due to some concerns about his “true ace” potential, particularly his lack of durability and tendency to issue walks.

“Beyond the eye-popping numbers are fairly obvious concerns regarding Snell, whether that be his performance between his Cy Young campaigns in 2018 and 2023 or his tendency to walk a lot of batters and not pitch as long in games as traditional aces do,” Marzano wrote.

“Despite Snell’s accolades, the left-hander has yet to pitch in more than 180.2 innings in a season, and with an MLB-leading 99 walks in 2023, teams have pumped the brakes on offering him show-stopping money.”

Adding Blake Snell Would Show It’s World Series or Bust for the New York Yankees

Even though the Yankees have made an offer to Snell, as Nightengale and others have reported, skeptics have pointed out that predictions like Marzano’s — which could cost the team $25 million per year — would be onerous for the Yankees payroll, to say the least.

“The Yankees are projected to have a luxury tax payroll number over $300 million,” CBS Sports reported. “In turn, that would result in a $50 million tax bill. If Snell were to sign for $15 million annually, the Yankees’ luxury tax number would equal the Los Angeles Dodgers.

For reference, the Dodgers are projected to pay nearly $70 million in tax fees. In other words, the Yankees would be forking over close to $400 million all together in order to field their roster.”

If the Yankees are willing to incur that cost and field a rotation led by both reigning Cy Young winners, it would demonstrate a major front office commitment to winning it all next season.

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