Recently, Adam and Rich discussed the Worst Free Agent Signings in Yankees History , the Worst Trades in Yankees History, and the Best Trades in Yankees History. With that thought bouncing in their minds, they decided to figure out which players comprise the Yankees best free agent signings in franchise history.
All teams have bad free agent signings and good free agent signings. The player either was signed as they enter their prime, what the player accomplished for the team was a bargain, or the player was a key contributor on the way to a World Series title. The Yankees are no exception to this. All Yankees fans have their favorite Yankees best free agent signings, but here are Adam and Rich’s choices for the Yankees best free agent signings in history,
The countdown will be from the fifth best down to the absolute best free agent signing in Yankees history. In the end, you will be able to vote for your choice of the Yankees best free agent signing. Grab a seat and some popcorn, because we now begin.
Yankees Best Free Agent Signings No. 5 –
Rich: Goose Gossage – Six Years/ $3.6 Million
Before Mariano Rivera, the best Yankees closer in history was Goose Gossage. Goose was brought in to replace the Cy Young winning closer in 1977 (Sparky Lyle). Gossage was amazing in 1978, pitching 134 1/3 innings out of the bullpen(!) and helped the Yankees make up the 14 1/2 game difference to the Red Sox. 1978 was the only season the Yankees won the World Series with Gossage in the bullpen. Over his time with the Yankees, Goose struck out 512 batters in 533 innings. Gossage, like Reggie, had an attitude that didn’t jive too well with the other Yankees players (and to this day, he continues to cause issues) but in the 1970s, you wanted one guy coming out of the bullpen to pitch multiple innings and that man was Goose Gossage.
Adam: CC Sabathia – Seven Years/ $161 Million
Yankees fans will probably scream about the size of the contract that CC Sabathia signed but the dollars are not the only factor that matters in situations like these. Especially when it revolves around long-term deals for players that will be on the wrong side of their career near the end. The team will toss away the end as long as there is value at the beginning. Plus, do not forget he originally signed that seven-year/$161 million dollar deal before he opted out.
The first four years of the deal were lights out and you could argue the Yankees got a steal in that day at first. Through that stretch, he had a 135 ERA+ and averaged 32 starts and 226 innings per year. One knock on Sabathia was a falloff in the playoffs. But in 2009, he picked up the bombers and put them on his back including an American League Championship Series MVP award. He was an absolute ace. The back end of that tweaked deal was not the greatest but he still found a way to stay serviceable. The first four years were out of this world. That allows him to come in at number five on my list of Yankees best free agent signings.