With Rafael Soriano reportedly off the market and heading to Washington, the Yankees have officially moved on from one of their most unusual signings of the past three or four years. Brian Cashman didn’t want to do it, the Yankees ownership did, and so Soriano came to New York to deliver one disappointing season and one exactly-what-they-needed season.
A few thoughts now that he’s gone elsewhere.
• Soriano gave the Yankees exactly what they need, exactly when they needed it. As a fill-in for Mariano Rivera, Soriano was terrific, and there would certainly be more comfort about this bullpen if Soriano were still in place. But this might be as good a year as any to lose that comfort. Rivera is coming back, and although there’s still some uncertainty with him, the Yankees do have Dave Robertson, Joba Chamberlain and David Aardsma providing late-inning depth. Soriano would be an upgrade, but maybe not worth such a cost.
• Never count out Scott Boras. The market for Soriano took a while to develop, but eventually Boras found a multi-year deal worth more than everything he and Soriano had previously turned down this offseason. Did they expect to get more than this? Maybe, but Soriano still got a pretty large contract worth more than anything he left on the table.
• Certainly don’t count out the Nationals. They should get a full year of Bryce Harper and Stephen Strasburg, plus they traded for Denard Span, re-signed Adam LaRoche and added both Soriano and Dan Haren. It took years of bad baseball to put them in this position, but the Nationals could be special (and exciting).
• I thought the untuck thing was cool. A little weird, maybe, but it was a no-harm celebration.
• There’s a way for the Nats to begin making up for their lost draft pick. They could still trade Mike Morse. Washington gave up an anonymous piece of the future to acquire Soriano. They could now add a lesser piece of the future by giving up Morse.
• As it stands, the Yankees have three of this year’s top 32 picks. Granted, they’re near the bottom of the top 33 — No. 27 is their original pick, they got No. 31 when Nick Swisher signed, and they now have No. 32 as compensation for Soriano. Some of that could change slightly depending on what happens with Kyle Lohse and Michael Bourn, the only remaining compensation free agents still on the market.
Associated Press photo