Yankees Secure Marcus Stroman with $37 Million Contract, Pending Physical

New York, New York – The New York Yankees have reportedly agreed to a two-year, $37 million contract with free-agent right-hander Marcus Stroman, according to a source familiar with the matter. The deal also includes a vesting option for a third year. While the club has not officially confirmed the agreement, Stroman himself posted a photo on his Instagram Stories wearing a Yankees uniform.

This isn’t the first time Stroman’s name has been linked to the Yankees. In 2019, there was interest from the New York team before the Trade Deadline. At the time, Stroman, who hails from Medford, N.Y., expressed his desire to play for the Bronx Bombers. The proximity to his hometown and the allure of pitching at Yankee Stadium fueled his dreams.

Stroman has established himself as an above-average starter throughout his career, which began in 2014 with the Toronto Blue Jays. His earned run average plus (ERA+) has not dipped below 113 in the past four seasons. Last year, he was off to an impressive start with the Chicago Cubs, boasting a 2.28 ERA and a .536 opponents’ OPS in his first 16 starts before making the All-Star team.

However, Stroman faced challenges in the latter half of the 2023 season. He experienced a downturn in July, allowing 27 earned runs in just 26 2/3 innings. In August, he landed on the injured list due to right hip inflammation, followed by a right rib cartilage fracture. Although he returned in September to make four relief appearances, he only pitched eight innings, ending the season with a 3.95 ERA, his second-highest mark to date.

Despite these setbacks, Stroman had previously been a durable pitcher, exceeding 180 innings three times between 2016 and 2019. He even surpassed 200 innings in ‘16 and ‘17 with the Blue Jays, earning a Gold Glove Award and finishing among the top 10 for the AL Cy Young in the latter season. In 2019, he was traded to the New York Mets, where he played until 2021.

Known for his ability to induce ground balls and limit damaging contact, Stroman relies on his low-90s sinker. His ground-ball rate has consistently been above 50%, reaching as high as 60% in the early years of his career. In 2023, he achieved a ground-ball rate of 57%, his strongest since 2018. However, his chase rate and zone rate decreased significantly, resulting in a career-worst walk rate of 9.0%.

The Yankees are hoping that Stroman’s strengths will contribute positively to their pitching staff. With this new agreement, Stroman will have the opportunity to showcase his talent in the heart of his hometown. The deal is pending a physical examination, and the club has yet to officially announce the signing.

In summary, the New York Yankees reportedly reached a two-year, $37 million contract agreement with Marcus Stroman, a talented right-handed pitcher. The deal includes a vesting option for a third year. While Stroman has expressed his desire to play for the Yankees in the past, this marks his first opportunity to wear the pinstripes. Stroman’s consistent performance and ability to induce ground balls make him a valuable addition to the team’s pitching rotation. The Yankees have not confirmed the deal, pending a physical examination.