Yu Darvish is a quality starter, no doubt about it. His career numbers are solid, 56-42, 3.42 E.R.A., 1021 strikeouts in 832.1 innings with a 1.17 W.H.I.P. Most teams in need of another starter would surely consider signing Darvish, but the New York Yankees should pass.
Darvish’s best years are behind him. Last year was his first season of 30 or more starts since 2013, and he didn’t exactly light the world on fire. His strikeouts were there (209 in 186.2 inn.), but he went 10-12 with a 3.86 E.R.A. between the Rangers and Dodgers. Not bad, but far from a top of the line starter. He has already had Tommy John surgery and landed on the D.L. last August with a back issue. Is he 100% back from the surgery? If he is, and those are his numbers, I don’t want him. If he isn’t, why risk signing him. I think it’s safe to say no team that signs him will ever get anything close to that 2013 season, his one truly dominant season. The Yankees are trying to stay under the luxury tax (197 million) and looking to re-load for next years free agent class (Manny Machado–Bryce Harper). He is not going to be worth the money he’ll likely be seeking.
Lastly, you make a move like this because you think it puts you over the top and gives you a better chance to compete in the postseason. This brings me to my biggest issue with Darvish. His career postseason stats are terrible. He has pitched 6 games in 5 series going 2-4 with a 5.81 E.R.A. In last years World Series he went 0-2 giving up 8 earned runs in 3.1 innings. Not one strikeout. The Dodgers acquired him for a championship run, and he couldn’t have pitched worse. The Yankees plan on competing for a championship this upcoming season, would you trust this guy?
So let’s wrap this all up. We have an aging pitcher, who has already had one major surgery and hasn’t had a dominant season in 5 years, coming off one of the worst World Series performances in recent history. No thanks. Let’s see what Chance Adams can do.
The Other Ten Percent