Weaver’s all-or-nothing Yankees deal puts It all on the line

Luke Weaver signed an incentive-loaded deal with the Yankees.
Amanda Paula
Saturday January 13, 2024

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The New York Yankees recently finalized an agreement with pitcher Luke Weaver, originally pegged to assume the role of the team’s fifth starter. However, the dynamics swiftly changed when the Yankees also secured a deal with Marcus Stroman. Consequently, Weaver is anticipated to enter spring training positioned as a long reliever but will undergo preparation as a starter, potentially serving as the primary choice for rotation needs.

Yankees go all-in on Weaver

As stated by the New York Post, the formalization of Weaver’s contract, set at $2 million for the 2024 season, is contingent upon him passing a physical examination scheduled for Thursday. This arrangement presents an intriguing structure, laden with performance-based bonuses that could significantly augment the overall value of Weaver’s deal.

In the event of regular use either as a starter or reliever, Weaver stands to accrue additional compensation. Notably, he would receive $50,000 for achieving milestones at 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30 starts, along with identical bonuses for making 45, 50, 55, and 60 appearances out of the bullpen. These incentives are poised to reward Weaver for his consistency and contribution to the team’s pitching rotation.

Moreover, the contractual landscape extends into the 2025 season, featuring a $2.5 million club option with no accompanying buyout. This option’s value escalates based on Weaver’s performance in the 2024 season, with increments tied to specific innings pitched milestones. For instance, the option becomes $3 million if Weaver reaches 100 innings, $4 million at 120 innings, $5 million at 140 innings, and $6 million if he attains 160 innings.

A distinctive feature of Weaver’s contract is the absence of an option to be sent to the minors without clearing waivers, underlining the Yankees’ commitment to integrating him into their major league roster. Weaver, at the age of 30, possesses a pitching style that has attracted attention from multiple teams in the past two seasons. Notably, his brief stint with the Yankees in the latter part of the previous season showcased promising results, evidenced by a 3.38 ERA. During this period, Weaver strategically increased the usage of his cutter while adjusting his curve and slider usage, contributing to his success on the mound.

As Weaver’s future with the Yankees unfolds, his incentive-laden contract introduces a compelling dynamic to his role, aligning his compensation with on-field performance. The upcoming season, marked by the potential for both starting and relief duties, holds the promise of significant financial rewards for Weaver as he seeks to make a lasting impact on the Yankees’ pitching staff.

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