ESPN Free-agent outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury has reached agreement on a seven-year contract with the New York Yankees pending a physical exam, a baseball source told ESPN.com.The source confirmed a CBSSports.com report that Ellsbury’s deal exceeds Carl Crawford’s seven-year, $142 million contract with the Boston Red Sox in December 2010. Ellsbury was on his way from his home in Arizona to New York on Tuesday night to take the physical, the source said. A source also told ESPNNewYork.com that the Yankees are in “serious” negotiations with Shin-Soo Choo. The Yankees, the source said, slightly prefer Ellsbury over Choo. CBSSports.com first reported that a seven-year deal with Ellsbury appears to be close. ESPN.com’s Buster Olney reported the Yankees have an aggressive offer to Ellsbury. In recent days, the Yankees have become increasingly pessimistic that they will be able to retain second baseman Robinson Cano, feeling as if a team such as the Seattle Mariners would outbid them and top $200 million for Cano.
When Jacoby Ellsbury is healthy, he is one of the top all-around outfielders in baseball, he is an excellent defensive player with outstanding speed who can also hit for power. Signing Ellsbury is a huge move by the New York Yankees, not only because he adds defense and speed to a team that sorely lacked it, but also because it weakens their biggest rival the defending champion Boston Red Sox. This move is very similar to when the Yankees signed Johnny Damon from the Red Sox in 2005, a move that worked our great for them, as he helped the Yanks win the 2009 World Series. By signing catcher Brian McCann earlier this off season, and now outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury, the Yankees have upgraded two positions of weakness from the 2013 season, but I am still worried about the pitching staff.
Welcome to New York, Jacoby!