The 32-year-old infielder is coming off a season in which he led MLB in batting average by hitting .364.
LeMahieu also topped the American League in OBP this season. He finished in the top five of the AL MVP voting in each of his first two seasons with New York, including a third-place finish in the abbreviated 2020 season. The two-year, $24 million contract he signed with the Yankees prior to the 2019 season has been one of the best value contracts in the league and now the California native has been rewarded with a long-term contract that will keep him in New York through 2026.
Reports last month suggested the Yankees and LeMahieu were far apart on a deal. SNY reported earlier this week that there was mutual interest between the Mets and LeMahieu, but nothing further materialized between the two parties. According to Jon Heyman of MLB Network, the Blue Jays offered LeMahieu a four-year, $78 million contract, but LeMahieu opted for a longer-term deal at a slightly lower annual value.
LeMahieu’s deal is the longest and richest any player has signed in this free agency cycle, per Spotrac’s database.
The MLB’s trend of a slow free agency has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, which has made owners less willing to shell out big money on free agents.