May 20, 2024

The Yankees have adjusted their bullpen strategy after veteran reliever Hector Neris signed a one-year deal with the Cubs. Despite earlier interest in Neris, the Yankees have shifted their focus to more cost-effective bullpen options. According to Jon Heyman of the New York Post, the Yankees are making “low offers” to relievers like Ryan Brasier and Phil Maton. They are also considering reuniting with Wandy Peralta and Keynan Middleton, with Middleton being the most economical choice.

Hector Neris signs with Cubs as Yankees lose another bullpen option

Neris’ $9 million deal with the Cubs prompted the Yankees to pursue more budget-friendly options. The Yankees’ payroll for the 2024 season, including acquisitions like Juan Soto, Alex Verdugo, and Marcus Stroman, is estimated to be over $300 million by Cot’s Contracts.

Despite the temptation to sign a high-profile reliever like Josh Hader, who received a $95 million deal from the Astros, the Yankees are cautious about overspending late in the winter. The team has a history of maximizing the performance of cost-effective bullpen arms, whether they are prospects or veterans seeking career revitalization.

As of now, and barring any spring injuries, the majority of the Yankees’ bullpen is set for the 2024 season. Clay Holmes is slated to return as the closer, supported by Jonathan Loáisiga, Tommy Kahnle, and Ian Hamilton in setup roles. Scott Effross, returning from Tommy John surgery, and newly-acquired lefty Victor González are positioned to contribute. Luke Weaver is expected to fill a long-reliever role, leaving one spot in the bullpen for a mix of pitchers, including Ron Marinaccio, Nick Ramirez, Luis Gil, and newcomers Cody Morris and Cody Poteet. Prospects Will Warren and Clayton Beeter will also contend for a roster spot, providing depth for a starting rotation with injury concerns.

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