Take a ride on Derek Jeter … the bridge

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jeter-091104-3pm.standard[1].jpgThe New York Post is known for stirring the pot with its screaming headlines and creative uses of photo shop (Pedro’s head on a baby’s body?) But they can push the envelope just as well with word-play. This from Angela Montefinise:

Big Apple women may soon be able to take a ride on Derek Jeter — the bridge, that is. Bronx leaders have proposed naming the soon-to-be-built East 153rd Street bridge for the Yankee shortstop.

Maybe it’s just me, but it seems kind of sexist that only women will be allowed to use the bridge. I’m sure there are plenty of male Yankee fans who have man-crushes on their beloved shortstop — and could also use an easier commute.

OK, OK I get it. She’s being edgy. And at least Ms. Montefinise waits until the bottom of her story to mention the length of “The Jeter” (512 feet!!).
But there are two things I’m wondering about.

1)  The bridge costs only $87 million. Jeter himself will make $21 million next season, the final year of his 10-year $189-million deal. This doesn’t seem like a match to me, almost like the city is being a little cheap. In fact, maybe they should just rename the whole town “Derek Jeter City.”

2) As the first commenter in the story points out, “What happens when he retires, then decides to un-retire and play for boston?” Well at that point, Minka Kelly would dump him wouldn’t she? After all, it’s not like Boston will rename it the “Derek Jeter Freedom Trail.”

Follow me on Twitter at @bharks. For more baseball news, go to NBCSports.com.

Noah Syndergaard: ‘I feel like I’m going to bet (on) myself in free agency’

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Yankees starter Luis Severino and Phillies starter Aaron Nola both signed contract extensions within the last week. Severino agreed to a four-year, $40 million contract with a 2023 club option. Nola inked a four-year, $45 million deal with a 2023 club option.

While the deals both represented significant raises and longer-term financial security for the right-handed duo, some feel like the players are selling themselves short. It has become a more common practice for players to agree to these types of deals in part due to how stagnant free agency has become. Get the money while you can.

Mets starter Noah Syndergaard is in a similar situation as Severino and Nola were. He and the Mets avoided arbitration last month, agreeing on a $6 million salary for the 2019 season. He has two more years of arbitration eligibility left. A contract extension with the Mets would presumably cover both of those years plus two or three years of what would be free agent years. As Tim Britton of The Athletic reports, however, Syndergaard plans to test free agency when the time comes.

Syndergaard said, “I trust my ability and the talent that I have. So I feel like I’m going to bet (on) myself in free agency and not do what they did. But if it’s fair for both sides and they approach me on it, then maybe we can talk.” He clarified that he would be open to a conversation about an extension, but the Mets thus far haven’t approached him about it. In his words, “There’s been no traction.”

Syndergaard, 26, has been one of baseball’s better starters since debuting in 2015. He owns a career 2.93 ERA with 573 strikeouts and 116 walks in 518 1/3 innings. Among pitchers to have logged at least 400 innings since 2015 and post a lower ERA are Clayton Kershaw (2.22), Jacob deGrom (2.66) and Max Scherzer (2.71). Syndergaard made only seven starts in 2017 yet still ranks seventh among pitchers in total strikeouts since 2015.

If Sydergaard doesn’t end up signing an extension, he will be entering free agency after the 2021 season. The collective bargaining agreement expires in December 2021 and a new one will likely be agreed upon around that time. Syndergaard will hopefully have better prospects entering free agency then than players do now.