Jake Arrieta is one of the best free agents available this offseason and the market for him is heating up in a big way. Theo Epstein and the Chicago Cubs would like to bring him back, but that scenario does not look very likely at this point in time. While he fits perfectly in Chicago, the Cubs aren't expected to offer him the kind of money or length of contract that Arrieta is looking for.
All of that being said, there are quite a few teams who will be willing to throw aggressive offers at Arrieta. One of those teams could end up being the up-and-coming New York Yankees.
According to MLB Trade Rumors, the Yankees could be in on Arrieta depending on what his contract demands are.
Last season with the Cubs, Arrieta got off to a slow start. He was able to turn things on later in the season, but went down with an injury that forced him to miss a good chunk of time. Despite the injury, Arrieta ended up compiling a 14-10 record to go along with a 3.53 ERA and 1.22 WHIP.
Arrieta grew into stardom with the Cubs back in 2015, where he won the Cy Young award and put up one of the best seasons for any starting pitcher in recent history. He finished the year with a 22-6 record and had a 1.77 ERA.At 31 years of age, Arrieta still has a few good years of baseball left in his prime. If he is looking for a four-year deal, the Yankees could be an ideal fit for him. They are a piece or two away from serious World Series contention and adding a proven star like Arrieta would be a big step in the right direction.
C.C. Sabathia is testing the free agency market this offseason, which could lead the Yankees to look at other top arms. Masahiro Tanaka opted to stay with the Yankees, which was big for New York.
Outside of the Yankees, there are a ton of teams that could make a play for Arrieta. Among the biggest names to keep an eye on, the St. Louis Cardinals, Houston Astros, Milwaukee Brewers, and Los Angeles Dodgers could be in play Arrieta.
It will be interesting to see what kind of approach the Yankees have this offseason. They have a team full of top-notch young talent and could use some veteran stars to balance out the roster. Adding a piece like Arrieta would make them much more dangerous in the American League, where teams like the Cleveland Indians, Astros, and Boston Red Sox are all serious contenders.
Expect to see the Yankees check in on Arrieta early on in free agency. They may not end up signing him, but they are certainly a team to keep an eye on.
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