The New York Yankees announced today that they have re-signed INF DJ LeMahieu to a six-year contract extending through the 2026 season.
LeMahieu, 32, earned his second career batting title in 2020, leading the Majors with a .364 batting average. With his NL-leading .348 batting average for Colorado in 2016, he became the first player in the Live Ball Era and second player in Major League history to win the batting title in both leagues according to the Elias Sports Bureau (also Ed Delahanty, NL in 1899 and AL in 1902). He is the ninth player (10th time) in franchise history to win the AL batting title and the fourth Yankee to lead the Majors in batting average, joining Mickey Mantle (.353 BA in 1956), Joe DiMaggio (.381 in 1939) and Lou Gehrig (.363 BA in 1934). His .364 batting average was the highest by a Yankees batting champion since DiMaggio in 1939. Overall in 2020, he placed third in AL MVP balloting and won the AL Silver Slugger Award at second base after hitting .364/.421/.590 (71-for-195) with 41R, 10 doubles, 2 triples, 10HR, 27RBI and 18BB in 50 games with the Yankees. On November 1, the Yankees extended him a qualifying offer, which he declined.
In his two seasons with the Yankees (2019-20), he leads the Majors with a .336 batting average (268-for-797), ranks second with both a .384 (61-for-159) average with runners in scoring position and .380 (76-for-200) average off left-handed pitchers, and is 11th with a .386 on-base percentage and .922 OPS. His 7.8 WAR (FanGraphs) since the start of 2019 is 12th among Major League hitters and sixth among infielders. Over the same span, he has hit 11 leadoff home runs, including six in 2019 and a Major League-leading five in 2020. He is the fourth Yankee in franchise history to have at least five leadoff home runs in back-to-back seasons, along with Rickey Henderson (three straight from 1985-87), Chuck Knoblauch (1998-99) and Alfonso Soriano (2002-03). In 2019, he placed fourth in AL MVP voting.
In 10 career Major League seasons with the Chicago Cubs (2011), Colorado Rockies (2012-18) and Yankees (2019-20), the right-handed batter has hit .305/.357/.430 (1,294-for-4,242) with 651R, 206 doubles, 35 triples, 85HR and 478RBI in 1,150 career games. He is a three-time All-Star (2015, ’17 and ’19), three-time Gold Glove Award winner (2014, ’17 and ’18) and two-time AL Silver Slugger Award winner (2019-20). He is one of three active players to win a batting title (2016, '20) and earn multiple Gold Glove awards (2014, ‘17 and ‘18), joining Mookie Betts and Albert Pujols.
According to FanGraphs, among the 105 hitters with at least 2,500 plate appearances over the last six seasons (2015-20), LeMahieu has the fifth-lowest swing-and-miss rate (5.2%), the sixth-highest contact rate (87.7%) and the 11th-highest line-drive rate (24.3%).
In his Major League career, has appeared in games defensively at 2B (1,004G), 3B (104G), 1B (55G) and SS (4G). He leads all active second basemen (min. 500G) with a .991 fielding pct. in his career.
LeMahieu was originally drafted by the Chicago Cubs in the second round of the 2009 First-Year Player Draft before being acquired by the Rockies in a four-player trade on December 8, 2011. He signed a two-year contract with the Yankees on January 14, 2019.