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MLB analyst believes the Yankees might target another player to stay under the Steve Cohen tax threshold

In his first full season in the majors in 2014, Josh Harrison, a little-known second baseman for the Pittsburgh Pirates, posted an impressive 137 wRC+ and 4.8 fWAR. But since then, his situation has somewhat deteriorated.

Harrison has a career batting line of .274/.318/.401, a below-average wRC+ of 96, a 4.3% walk rate, and an incredible 15% strikeout rate. He has generated 12.3 fWAR over that time.

“They too checked in on Josh Harrison” – Jon Heyman via New York Post (nj.com)

The 35-year-old had a .256/.317/.370 slash line in 119 games with the Chicago White Sox in his 12th MLB season. Harrison’s 98 wRC+ was just two points below the league average. Despite spending the majority of his time at second and third base on defense, he provided plus-6 defensive runs saved.

The fact of the matter is that the Yankees are already paying a hefty amount of luxury tax after making some tremendous signings this offseason. The Yanks already sit at about $290 million in 2023 taxes.

Signing Jurickson Profar would take the Yanks well above that threshold, which is why they are trying to exercise their limits here with Harrison.


Would Josh Harrison be a good fit for the Yanks?

The main factor working in Josh Harrison’s favor is his versatility on defense. Harrison has played every position on the field as a bar catcher since making his debut in 2011. He has played a good number of games at third base and in the outfield, but second base is by far the position where he has logged the most innings .

He has posted a -6 DRS at shortstop and a -3 DRS as a right fielder in little play over his career. He is sufficiently adaptable to fill in at any of these spots in a pinch even though his numbers are predictably limited in positions to which he is not accustomed.

As of today, there have been 22,734 total MLB players. Only 5.8% of them have reached 1,000 career MLB hits. Today, Josh Harrison joins that exclusive list of players. Congratulations to client @jhay_da_man on joining some of baseball’s best in achieving this rare feat! #msmfamily https://t.co/yofytkSiHz

“As of today, there have been 22,734 total MLB players. Only 5.8% of them have reached 1,000 career MLB hits. Today, Josh Harrison joins that exclusive list of players” – MSMsports

Although he doesn’t walk much and doesn’t hit the ball very hard, his percentile rankings aren’t exactly stellar. However, it’s worth noting that his 2021 strikeout rate placed him in the league’s 94th percentile. He is what he is at the plate at this point in his career: a player with a respectable contact rate who just doesn’t make the correct kind of contact.

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Edited by Nicolaas Ackermann



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