Rafael Soriano Gets Ridiculous Contract from Yankees

Whoa everybody, don't look now but the New York Yankees are throwing their money around like a bunch of crazy people. No offense to Rafael Soriano, but he is not worth roughly $12 million a year.

But apparently the Yankees believe he is. The two sides have come to terms on a three-year contract reportedly worth $35 million dollars. Upon agreeing to the deal, Soriano promptly passed out.

The right-handed closer made it clear this offseason he would accept a role as a lowly reliever with only one team -- the Yankees -- because of his "respect and admiration" for long-time closer Mariano Rivera. Obviously, Mo won't be around much longer, so Soriano may eventually have that closer's spot all to himself... or will he?

Don't get me wrong, Soriano kicks ass at what he does. He put up fabulous numbers last season, posting a minuscule 1.73 ERA over 64 appearances as the Tampa Bay Rays closer. He made $7.25 million doing so, a nice chunk of change.

And as if his American League-best 45 saves in 48 opportunities wasn't awesome enough, he's struck out an insane amount of batters over the last 138 innings: 159 of them with just 41 walks.

But more than $12 million a season for a relief pitcher? Yikes.

[Hardball Talk]


Ronn Graham said...

That is crazy! Ii guess the ripple effect of Pettite not signing til after the season starts and all of the great pitchers off the board a decent closer is worth more to the Yankees!

GB Nordic said...

I am sorry , but do not Yanks NOT have a closer in Mo?

Sooze said...

They totally know something we don't know.

Megs said...

Looking at the pic of Soriano and hearing Dave Chapelle's voice: "I'm rich biotch!"

JimCrikket said...

I guess the Yankees figure their starting pitchers aren't likely to throw many innings this year and will need a LOT of relievers.

Anonymous said...

Dude, it's not your money ... get over it.

The Yankees won't go bankrupt.

I promise.

Anonymous said...

Great deal. The draft pick was 31 on the list. Do you know how many first-round draft picks below 30 have made it to the major leagues over the last 45 years?

Twelve. And we're not talking about players who became star, like Mike Piazza. Many of these were just utility players and fringe relievers.

So the Yankees parted with a pick who, at best has a minimal chance to make any impact in the majors for the best reliever on the market, one of the best closers in the game. By effectively "shortening" each game, they improve their entire rotation. Soriano can spot Rivera, which will keep Mo fresh all year. It's an investment that provided insurance for the two-year deal they signed with Mo.

Think. Now everyone else in the bullpen drops down a notch to fill roles they're more comfortable with. Huge win. The 1996 Yankees were a decent team with one huge advantage over everyone: the best one-two bullpen punch in the word. This offense is better than the club had in '96, and now they have a chance to replicated the lethal bullpen tandem that made them so special back then. A no-brainer.

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