New York Yankees Sign Jacoby Ellsbury

Well I think Ellsbury can expect some massive booing upon his return to Fenway Park for the foreseeable future as he has agreed to join the New York Yankees – a bitter rival.  While it would have been nice if Ellsbury signed in the National League from a Blue Jays perspective this is essentially neutral.  He strengthens a rival and weakens one at the same time.  If it limits the Yankees ability to sign Robinson Cano perhaps it is even detrimental long term for the Yanks.

UPDATE: 8:41pm: Ellsbury’s deal is worth $153MM over seven years, according to Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News (on Twitter).  That tops Carl Crawford‘s deal by $12MM.

As per MLBTR:

The Yankees have agreed to sign Jacoby Ellsbury, according to Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News (via Twitter).  Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com first reported that the two sides were closing in on a seven-year pact.  It is believed the deal will top Carl Crawford‘s $142MM, seven-year deal with one estimate pegging the deal at about $150MM, according to Heyman.

Ellsbury offers more pop than the typical center fielder, with a career slugging percentage of .439 and isolated power of .141.  While his power is more of the doubles and triples variety, which is aided by his speed, he did hit 32 home runs in his stellar 2011 campaign.  In that year, Ellsbury led all of baseball with 9.1 wins above replacement, finished second in the AL MVP voting, won a Silver Slugger and a Gold Glove, and made the All-Star team.

The 30-year-old has also consistently posted above average UZR and DRS numbers in center field.  While he has come back to earth somewhat since ’11, he checked in with 5.8 wins above replacement in 2013, which is second only to Robinson Cano among free agents.

Yankees people envision Ellsbury in center with Brett Gardner moving to left.

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