Luis Severino and the New York Yankees have agreed on a 4 year contract with a club option, according to multiple reports. Joel Sherman says the deal features a $2 million signing bonus, a $4 million salary for 2019, a $10 million salary for 2020, a $10.25 million salary for 2021, an $11 million salary for 2022, and a 2023 club option at $15 million with a $2.75 million buyout. The signing bonus means that, although Severino gets $6 million this year, he will only count $4.4M towards the luxury tax calculation this year.
This deal for Severino appears to buy out four arbitration years and a free agent years, with the option — B-R shows him as having 2 years and 170 days of service time, which would mean he would be two days short of being eligible for free agency after the 2021 season. Per Ken Rosenthal, the deal was structured by Severino’s agents to have roughly equal money in 2020, 2021 and 2022 as a hedge against a possible strike in 2022.
Severino’s deal is on the heels of a similar extension signed by Aaron Nola that Rosenthal says has elicited criticism from agents, although Nola had just three years of team control remaining, compared to four for Severino, which makes the Severino deal more player-friendly.
Severino had a 4.8 bWAR season last year after a 5.3 bWAR season in 2017, and has established himself as one of the top young pitchers in the game. He’s now locked in lifetime security with this contract, while still being able to hit the free agent market after his age 29 season.