The arbitration excitement begins! Luckily, the New York Yankees avoided having to get to that point with Tommy Kahnle and Aaron Hicks by striking deals with them Thursday afternoon.
Remember last year when the talk of the town was Dellin Betances and the New York Yankees duking it out in an arbitration hearing? This year has started off on a far milder note.
Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com reported on Twitter Thursday evening that the Yankees have settled on terms with one of their key players last season. Aaron Hicks agreed to one-year, $2.825 million deal after his best season of his career in 2017.
Aaron Hicks has settled on a deal with the #Yankees for $2.825 million.
— Jerry Crasnick (@jcrasnick) January 12, 2018
Tommy Kahnle, yanks settle st $1.3125M
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) January 11, 2018
Whew! That’s two big names out of the way for the Yankees. By locking down Kahnle, the Yankees continue to have one of the better bullpens in the league. The 28-year-old righty arrived in the Bronx with Todd Frazier and David Robertson by trade on July 18.
Kahnle’s impact on that bullpen was instantly recognized, as he appeared in 32 games with his electric fastball. He posted a 2.70 ERA in pinstripes with a 1-1 record. He only allowed eight earned runs in 26.2 innings of work.
Aaron Hicks, on the other hand, spent the entirety of the 2017 season in pinstripes. Despite being sidelined with various injuries, Hicks proved that he was worth the hassle by making stellar defensive plays and getting clutch hits.
Hicks rounded out the season with a .266 average and a career-high 15 home runs. When he wasn’t hitting home runs, he was robbing them, as Hicks stole not one, but two grand slams from opponents this season with his massive ups.
That may be settled but the real work for the Yankees has just begun.