New York Yankees: Opting In Or Optioned Out New York Yankees: Opting In Or Optioned Out New York Yankees: Opting In Or Optioned Out

New York Yankees: Opting In Or Optioned Out


Ben Nicholson-Smith at has reported that New York Yankees reliever Rafael Soriano has no plans on using his contract’s opt-out clause.

Not officially confirmed, according to ESPN New York, but there is no reservation that Soriano will play out the 2-years left on his contract, which earns him a $25 million paycheck.

In his first season with the Yankees, Soriano pitched just shy of 40 innings, posting an ERA of 4.12, with 36 strikeouts, 18 earned runs, four home-runs and 18 walks.

Those numbers are not reflective of how Soriano did after he returned from a two-month long DL stint after the All-Star break. In August and September, Soriano showed signs of the 2010 pitcher that led the AL with 49 saves. He pitched 24 innings, fanned 26 batters and his strikeout per nine-innings went from 6.0 in the first-half to 9.6 in the second.

Considering Soriano agreed to take a demoted role to come to New York, and the attitude he displayed in beginning of the 2011 season was certainly not there in the end. The extraordinary amount of money the Yankees are tied to with Soriano is definitely a good reason to stay too, but I think this partnership will continue to get better and be viewed as a success when done. 

Soriano-Robertson-Mariano was a great late inning threesome, and with Joba Chamberlain returning from Tommy John surgery in 2012, the Yankees bullpen should be tops in baseball once again. And if the latest post season tells baseball fans anything, it is that the role of the bullpen is no longer an unheeded group, but a pivotal one.


The other Yankee news is that the team declined the $4 million option to keep left-handed reliever Damaso Marte around for 2012. In case you forgot, Marte played a small but vital role out of the bullpen during the 2009 World Series. Unfortunately, Marte hasn’t been back on the mound since due to a lingering shoulder injury.


With the 2011 World Series underway, as the St. Louis Cardinals won Game 1 over the Texas Rangers 3-2, Yankee fans will await a decision from ace CC Sabathia. Sabathia has the option to waive New York goodbye with a deadline of three days after the World Series ends to let everybody know.

Let’s hope that the Yankees don’t make for another dramatic off-season. Fact is Sabathia has to come back for more money and more years so biting the bullet would be ideal. Not going to hold my breath that this will be a smooth negotiation.

To get a great perspective read Joe Sherman of the NY Post’s latest article on the Sabathia negotiations HERE.


  1. Tanned Tom says:

    With Robertson's emergence Soriano is unnecessary, and one hopes, tradeable.

    Sabathia should be allowed to come back only if the contract is of reasonable length, going past 35 or 36 for a guy 50 lbs over weight is madness.

    Run away from overused relievers with injury histories. Marte has been crud as a Yankee, except for the 2009 postseason. Don't let that fool you, he's washed up.

    The farm system is filled with live arms, no sense in keeping Marte or Soriano.

    • Kate says:

      Well, Tanned Tom I disagree as I think Soriano can be quite valuable as he started to show later in the season. He can be very effective for the Yankees, and God forbid anything ever happened to Mariano, Soriano will be needed as either the closer or Robertson's set-up man.

      I think Soriano controls his future and that includes getting traded, so instead of complaining NYY fans need to make the best with what we cannot control.

  2. Carlton says:

    Why have a graet bullpen in the playoffs if Griardi doesn't use it. He left Garcia and CC much too long in games 2 and 4.

    • Kate says:

      Girardi gets crucified for switching pitchers too much…..this was not the pitchers faults, it was the bats that lost the ALDS.

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