33-Year-Old Right-Hander To Get $27 Million Over 3 Years; Posted 2.43 ERA With 112 Strikeouts In 77 2/3 Innings In 2018


NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — There’s simply no way around it — the Yankees’ bullpen is stacked.

According to multiple reports, the Bombers added another power arm on Thursday, agreeing to a three-year, $27 million contract with Brooklyn native Adam Ottavino.

The 33-year-old right-hander enjoyed a career year with the Colorado Rockies in 2018, going 6-4 with a 2.43 ERA, 34 holds and six saves in 75 appearances. He struck out 112 and walked 36 in 77 2/3 innings and opposing hitters batted just .158 against him.

Known for his high-90s fastball and other-worldly slider, Ottavino joins a Yankees relief corps that already features closer Aroldis Chapman, set-up men Zach Britton and Dellin Betances and bridge relievers Chad Green, Jonathan Holder and Tommy Kahnle.

Translation? The pressure will be off the pinstripe starting pitchers to throw more than six innings.

Adam Ottavino

Then-Rockies reliever Adam Ottavino pitches in the ninth inning against the Pirates on April 16, 2018 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

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Ottavino recently made headlines when he offered his thoughts on how legendary slugger Babe Ruth would do against today’s high-octane major league pitchers.

“I had an argument with a coach in Triple-A about Babe Ruth’s effectiveness in today’s game,” Ottavino said. “I said, ‘Babe Ruth, with that swing, swinging that bat, I got him hitting .140 with eight homers.’ He was like, ‘Are you nuts? Babe Ruth would hit .370 with 60 homers,’ and I’m like, ‘I would strike Babe Ruth out every time.’

“I’m not trying to disrespect him, you know, rest in peace, shout out to Babe Ruth. But it was a different game. I mean, the guy ate hot dogs and drank beer and did whatever he did. It was just a different game.”

The Yankees have had a busy offseason, re-signing Britton, CC Sabathia and J.A. Happ while adding James Paxton, Troy Tulowitzki and DJ LeMahieu, who also played for Colorado in 2018. They also remain on the periphery of the Manny Machado sweepstakes.