Yankees sign ex-Red Sox star Jacoby Ellsbury to 7-year deal
The New York Yankees trumped their top rivals on Saturday, announcing they have signed free-agent outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury
Ellsbury, who leaves the Boston Red Sox after seven seasons, signed a seven-year deal with the Yankees that extends through the 2020 season, with a club option for 2021, the team announced.
While the team did not reveal financial parts of the deal, NJ.com said it's worth $153 million.
The Yankees will introduce Ellsbury to the New York media and fans on Friday, Dec. 13.
The 30-year-old Ellsbury has a career batting average of .297 with 476 runs, 155 doubles, 65 home runs, 314 RBI and 241 stolen bases in 715 games over seven Major League seasons, all with the Red Sox (2007-13).
Defensively, his .995 fielding percentage -- committing just eight errors in 1,734 total chances -- is the top mark among MLB outfielders since his rookie season of 2007.
He's also a speedster on the bases, ranking third in the Majors with 232 stolen bases since 2008. Only Michael Bourn (280) and Rajai Davis (245) have more.
Ellsbury is coming an outstanding performance in 2013. He batted .278 with 92 runs, 31 doubles, nine home runs and 53 RBI in 134 games. In addition, he led the Major Leagues in stolen bases for the second time in his career with 70 base thefts, being caught just four times.
The left-handed hitter
He was one of the key cogs in Boston winning a second World Series during his time with the team (also 2007), hitting .344 and leading all postseason players in hits and runs in 16 total games.
His most productive season was 2011, when the left-handed batter hit .321 (212-for-660), and recorded career highs in games played (158), runs scored (119), doubles (46), home runs (32) and RBI (105), leading to him winning the American League Comeback Player of the Year Award and being ranked second in AL Most Valuable Player Voting.
He also won the Silver Slugger and Gold Glove Awards and was selected to the AL All-Star team that season.
Believed to be the first-ever Native American of Navajo descent to play in the Majors, Ellsbury is a native of Madras, Ore. He was Boston's top pick (23rd overall) in the first round of the 2005 First-Year Player Draft.
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, when he plays his first game for his new team in 2014, Ellsbury will become the 218th player to have appeared in at least one game for both the Yankees and Red Sox.