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How DJ LeMahieu Can Earn a Big Contract With the Yankees

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DJ LeMahieu #26 of the New York Yankees. Elsa/Getty Images/AFP

Yankees star infielder DJ LeMahieu is in the final season of a two-year, $24 million contract. Giving him a new contract as soon as possible should be a major priority for them. How can he convince them to do so?

DJ LeMahieu had a year to remember in 2019 and we don’t know when the new season will start but he is more than capable of picking up where he left off.

General manager Brian Cashman signed LeMahieu from the Rockies in order to add depth to the roster but he ended up being the best player of the Yankees last season.

LeMahieu hit .327 with 26 home runs and 102 RBIs in 145 games. He was extremely versatile for the Yankees, playing at second, third and first base. It was the first time he played at either third or first base since 2014.

Here’s how LeMahieu can earn a contract extension with the Yankees.

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Have a Career-High Batting Average

The Yankees need LeMahieu to continue producing at the top of the lineup. The best way for him to show his worth to the Yankees is by hitting for a career-high batting average. The talented infielder hit .327 last season, which is obviously pretty good but his career-best is .348 (in 2016).

It may seem very difficult but next season will not have 162 games, MLB will likely cut it in the half and that can facilitate hitting for a high average, especially for an incredible player like LeMahieu.

There’s an obstacle he could face though. LeMahieu could start the season not having seen live pitchers in months. This means that he will need many at-bats to get his groove. On the other hand, he doesn’t go into long slumps. A high batting average would force the Yankees to give him a lucrative extension.

DJ LeMahieu #26 of the New York Yankees. Tim Warner/Getty Images/AFP

Help the Yankees Win the World Series

DJ LeMahieu is one of the keys to the New York Yankees winning the World Series in 2020. He was that important for them last year. He was one of the few players that stayed healthy the entire season and if he can do the same next season then he can shine once again and help this team go far.

The expectations for LeMahieu are high. If he can deal with them and step up his game on offense and defense like he did last year then the Yankees will be in great shape and they will likely reward him eventually.

If LeMahieu takes an extra step and leads the Yankees to their first World Series since 2009 then he will definitely earn a big paycheck with them.

DJ LeMahieu #26 of the New York Yankees. Elsa/Getty Images/AFP

Win the American League MVP Award

DJ LeMahieu was arguably the MVP of the Yankees last year and he is a dark horse candidate to win the award next season. BetOnline has LeMahieu at +2500 to be named American League MVP.

The 31-year-old finished behind Mike Trout, Alex Bregman and Marcus Semien in AL MVP voting last year, by far the highest he has placed in his career.

There’s a big reason why LeMahieu has those MLB odds. Mike Trout is the best player in baseball and he already has three American League MVP awards. Trout may not play with a contender but he is in the Most Valuable Player conversation every year.

While Trout is a five-tool player, LeMahieu proved that he can put up big numbers. He would have to put up massive numbers but considering that we might have a shorter season, LeMahieu being able to produce almost like Trout it’s not entirely out of the realm of possibility. He just has to match him for half a season. It’s easier said than done but not impossible.