11:24: MLB Network Jon Heyman tweets that Kahnle’s deal is worth $ 5.25MM over the two years, even though it appears to be the level at which the contract can maximize, and not the guaranteed portion. Mark Feinsand from MLB.com reports that Kahnle will earn $ 750K in 2021, $ 3.45MM in 2022 and can earn an additional $ 750K in incentives.
11:06: The Dodgers have agreed a two-year contract with freehand right-handers Tommy Kahnle, reports Ken Rosenthal from The Athletic (Twitter link). It is unlikely that Kahnle will strike out in 2021 after undergoing Tommy John surgery back in early August, so the deal is likely to be shelved to give the Dodgers a potentially late inning weapon in year two of the pact. Kahnle is represented by the Ballengee Group.
Kahnle, 31, was cut off from the Yankees’ 40s men list at the end of the season and elected free agent. He has five-plus years of Major League service time, meaning he was scheduled to become a free agent after the 2021 season anyway. Given that it’s very unlikely he’s throwing next season, it was only logical that the Yankees cut him off the 40 – man list.
A reunion between the Yankees and Kahnle has not seemed likely, as the Yanks apparently intend to stay south of the luxury tax limit, as a backloaded two-year deal for the Kahnle would come with some degree of luxury branching based on its average annual value. His two-year deal will follow a recent trend of multi-year contracts for pitcher resuming from Tommy John surgery. Recent examples of such contracts include Nathan Eovaldi‘s two-year deal with Rays, Michael Pineda‘s (first) two – year agreement with the twins and Drew Smyly‘s two-year pact with the Cubs.
At Kahnle, the Dodgers will have a potential strike arm to add to their late-inning mix in 2022, when Kenley Jansens five-year pact will have run its course. Joe Kelly‘s three-year pact will also be open, though LA has a $ 12MM club option on him for the 2022 campaign. Although Kahnle struggled through a disastrous 2018 season, he was fantastic in 2016-17 and also quite good in 2019. He only hit a (fruitless) inning in 2020, before however going down with the injury that led to his surgery.
All in all, Kahnle carries a 3.48 ERA and 3.05 FIP in 175 2/3 innings, going back to the 2016 season. Along the way, he has given an average of 12.4 strikes, 3.7 walks and 0.92 home runs per. The hard-throwing Kahnle averaged 96.8 km / h on its heater at the time, which contributed to an excellent 15.9 percent oscillating strike rate and a 32.8 percent opponent’s hunting rate in places outside the strike zone.
With Jansen and Kelly perhaps both off the list when Kahnle is able to throw himself against the Dodgers, he will join what should be a very different-looking auxiliary corps. Flame throwing Brusdar Graterol gets the opportunity to work further into the late inning mix this year and could be an important factor in this group. Right hand Dylan Floro and left-wing Victor Gonzalez, Adam Kolarek and Scott Alexander are all under club control also in the 2022 season.