The long-rumored contract between the New York Yankees and former Boston Red Sox third baseman Kevin Youkilis has finally been accepted, with the veteran agreeing to a one-year, $12 million deal with the club, pending a physical.
With the condition of Alex Rodriguez's hip still in question, the team needed a third baseman to fill the void depending on how long Rodriguez's recovery takes. Youkilis and Jeff Keppinger (who signed for three years and $12 million with the White Sox last week) were New York's top targets, and the club reportedly had this offer out to Youkilis for at least a week. After the Indians signed Mark Reynolds and ended their pursuit of Youkilis and Michael Young accepted a trade to the Phillies, it seemed like a matter of time until Youkilis and the Yankees came together.
Youkilis, who will turn 34 in March, is no sure thing for New York like he was for years in Boston. He's dealt with injuries in each of the last three seasons, missing a total of 142 games due to a myriad of health issues. Last season was the worst of his career, as Youkilis OPSed .745 with a 19 homers and career-worst .235 batting average in a season that was split between the Red Sox and White Sox.
The salary Youkilis is getting for 2013 is probably more than he's worth given last season, but at least it's just a one-year deal. Besides, the alternative options to him weren't pretty, and the Yankees needed a warm body at third because of Rodriguez's hip. It'll be interesting to see the response in the Bronx for the former hated rival, but I think they'll take to him just fine, like they did with Johnny Damon.