NEW YORK — Reliever Tommy Kahnle and the New York Yankees agreed to a one-year contract for $1,312,500, the first player to reach a deal among the team’s eight who are eligible for salary arbitration.
Kahnle’s deal raised New York’s luxury tax payroll to $122,012,500 for eight players with agreements and leaves the Yankees’ projected tax payroll at about $178 million — well under the $197 million tax threshold. The total includes $29 million estimated for the seven players still eligible for arbitration, $10 million for the rest of the 40-man roster, $14,044,600 for benefits and a $3 million charge for cash transactions: a $5.5 million payment to Houston as part of the Brian McCann trade, a $500,000 payment to San Diego as part of the Chase Headley and a $3 million credit from Miami as part of the Giancarlo Stanton trade.
Kahnle, with a fastball averaging 98 mph, was 2-4 with a 2.59 ERA in 69 relief appearances last year and made $547,000. He was acquired from the Chicago White Sox on July 19 along with reliever David Robertson and third baseman Todd Frazier. Kahnle had a 2.70 ERA in 32 games with the Yankees.
Starting pitcher Sonny Gray and relievers Dellin Betances, Chasen Shreve and Adam Warren remain eligible for arbitration along with shortstop Didi Gregorius, outfielder Aaron Hicks and backup catcher Austin Romine. Most are expected to settle before Friday’s scheduled exchange with teams of proposed arbitration salaries.