The arbitration process is one of the weirdest parts of the baseball offseason, but it is something that everyone accepts. This year, the Yankees and Dellin Betances were separated by $2 million when they exchanged salary figures, so they went to a trial.
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Again, it’s sort of weird to go to a trial with your best players, but whatever. It happens. The Yankees won the trial on Saturday, and that’s the end of things, right? Betances is a little upset he won’t make as much as he feels he deserves, but everyone can move on with their lives. Well, not if Randy Levine has anything to do with it. Levine had some choice words for his star reliever, including insulting him for having the gall to ask for $5 million.
It’s strange enough that the team’s president who isn’t exactly qualified to be making baseball decisions is taking part in arbitration hearings, but to make these comments after his side won is truly bizarre. Betances and his agent, unsurprisingly, were not going to take this lying down. While his agent was sure to mention that they still have a good relationship with New York’s front office, they were clearly hurt by Levine’s comments. You can see for yourself from their quotes in the linked piece.
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Betances is under team control with the Yankees through 2020, so they do have some time to repair this relationship. While the reliever is understandably upset with his bosses, these types of situations can be easily swept aside when the team is winning. With that being said, Levine at the very least cost the Yankees a lot more in the long run if/when they decide to re-sign Betances. The righty made it clear this has changed his future outlook on free agency.