The Yankees have made some bad and some good signings over the past five years, but which ones were the absolute worst of the bunch?
We all are human, we all make mistakes. Even super GM Brian Cashman makes mistakes with signing players. But life is filled with mistakes and life is like baseball, if you mess up 3 out of 10 times that is a good season. Just have to learn from those seven mistakes. Let’s take a painful look back at Brian Cashman’s three worst signings.
3. Chris Carter
On February 7, 2017, The Yankees signed Chris Carter to a one-year $3.5 mil contract. Chris was coming off a career season, in 2016 he led the NL in home runs with 41. The Yankees were still trying to find a first baseman that could play every day and give decent production. Once Greg Bird went down with an injury, it became Carter’s job and he quickly showed how awful he truly was.
Carter looked like he didn’t know how to play baseball at times. Swinging at balls that were about to hit him in the head, and dropping balls at first that then led to someone getting hurt during that inning. Chris Carter flat out could not hit and was a waste of money for the Yankees. His Stats during his short time with the Yankees will make you sick. He slashed .201/.284/.370. In 184 at-bats he could only muster 37 and struck out 76 times which is in 41% of his at-bats.
2. A.J. Burnett
On December 18, 2008, The Yankees signed A.J. Burnett to a five-year $82.5 mil contract. Out of the three big players, the Yankees signed that offseason, this was the one that backfired the most. A.J. was decent in his first year with the Yankees. His only big moment as a Yankee was Game Two of the 2009 World series. In that game, A.J. pitched seven innings of one-run ball, only giving up four hits and striking out nine Phillies. That was the pitcher the Yankees paid a ton of money for. But we only saw that guy once. After 2009 A.J. fell off a cliff.
Burnett pitched two more seasons with the Yankees, having a 5+ ERA in both years. Burnett struggled to keep the ball in the park and in time the Yankees had enough. They traded him to the Pirates and said they would pay the remainder of his contract, that is how bad they wanted him gone.
1. Jacoby Ellsbury
On December 3, 2013, The Yankees signed Jacoby Ellsbury to a seven-year $153 mil contract. For the first year he looked good, Ellsbury was producing good numbers for a leadoff hitter. He got injured his second year and would then come back for 2016 and play almost a full season. But in 2017, everything changed. He Suffered a concussion on May 24, 2017, and would be sidelined for a month. This allowed Hicks to play every day and Ellsbury would have lost his job had Hicks not gotten hurt himself.
Once Hicks came back Ellsbury lost his job and it’s because he was getting hurt all the time and not hitting when he got back. But no one could imagine the story of 2018, Ellsbury didn’t play once in 2018 having a new injury almost every week.
He ended up having surgery to repair a tear in his hip. Ellsbury has been getting paid $21 mil a year to get hurt pretty much and with a no-trade clause, we might we be stuck with him until at least 2021 when we can buy out his contract. Overall this might be Cashman’s worst free agent signing of all time.