The LoHud Yankees Blog

A New York Yankees blog by Chad Jennings and the staff of The Journal News


Re-tuck: The quiet end to the Soriano era

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on Nov 01, 2012 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

There was no shock or outrage. Just a nine-word sentence in a four-sentence email.

RHP Rafael Soriano has opted out of his contract.

That was yesterday’s announcement from the Yankees, a quiet end to a deal that initially created so much buzz and controversy that general manager Brian Cashman announced publicly that he never wanted to sign it in the first place.

Rafael Soriano has opted out, and perhaps the most surprising thing is that it wasn’t surprising at all.

Two years ago he signed a massive contract to be the Yankees setup man. That contract seemed like a complete bust for the Yankees when Soriano battled injury and inconsistency in 2011, but this year was a perfect storm. Mariano Rivera was hurt, and Soriano thrived in his place. It was the only scenario that could possibly lead him to back out of the deal and pass up $14 million guaranteed.

How do you view the Soriano deal today?

Clearly the Yankees took on all the risk. If Soriano had flopped this year, the Yankees would still be on the hook for a drastic overpay. Because Soriano thrived, he gets a $1.5-million buyout and the chance to look elsewhere, leaving the Yankees high and dry. Of course, the Yankees certainly got their money’s worth this season, and if Rivera decided to play again, Soriano would have been back to being a wildly expensive setup man on a team that already has the eighth inning under control.

If you could do the Soriano deal again, would you?

Associated Press photo

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