The Yankees don’t build teams to win in the first half. It’s nice that the Pirates are still in the playoff hunt, but being in the hunt doesn’t mean much around here. The Yankees build teams to win in the postseason, and in that sense, Rafael Soriano might still be worth the money.
Dave Robertson has emerged as a dominant setup man, and guys like Cory Wade and Luis Ayala have been a real boost, but to make the Yankees bullpen nearly as good as it seemed to be in spring training, they’ll need someone like Soriano. He’s been out since May 17, but he’s closer to a return than any other injured Yankee.
“If I had to guess who would be first it would be Soriano,” Joe Girardi said. “He’s getting to a point where we could see him in a game fairly quickly.”
Sure, the Yankees could target a reliever at the trade deadline — bullpen arms are always available — but they’ve learned the hard way that relievers are an unreliable lot. They knew that before they signed Soriano, and they certainly know that now that they have him under contract. Soriano’s a sunk cost, and he’s at least as good as anyone the Yankees could acquire.
There’s risk involved with every reliever. The Yankees have already taken a risk on Soriano. The second half is the time to actually get something out of him, or consider him this season’s worst investment.
Associated Press photo