If SI.com’s Jon Heyman’s report is true, then the Yankees’ offer for shortstop Derek Jeter is more than reasonable.
According to Heyman, the Yankees are on the verge of offering their captain a three-year, $45 million contract. Jeter is reportedly looking for at least a four-year deal, but given his age and declining skills, it’s hard to argue with whether or not the Yankees’ offer is fair.
Jeter means more to the Yankees than what he does on the field, but it’s not as if the Bombers are low-balling him here. He’s no longer a strong defensive shortstop and he’s coming off a year in which he batted .270 over 663 at bats. He posted career numbers in 2009 but nobody expected him to repeat that effort in 2010, which he didn’t.
In some respects, the Yankees have to overpay. Again, his contributions to the organization run deeper than his stat line and New York has to be willing to fork over a little more than Jeter would probably get on the open market. It’s about showing respect to the player that helped lead them to five World Series titles over the past two decades.
But let’s get real here. Jeter wouldn’t get three years and $45 million on the open market – not at 36. It’s up to his agent to get the best deal possible and Jeter’s camp may wind up asking for more, but the Yankees’ current deal is certainly fair for all parties involved.