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New York Yankees Sign Rafael Soriano: How It Makes Bombers Bullpen Dominant

Jon Heyman of has reported that free agent closer Rafael Soriano has agree to a 3-year, $35 million deal with the New York Yankees.

The Yankees may have overpaid Soriano, but this is a great move for the Yanks who should have no problem closing out games in the 2011.

The signing of Soriano gives the Yankees probably the best one-two bullpen punch in the league.

Soriano saved an American League leading 45 games out of 48 tries. Soriano also posted a fantastic 1.73 ERA with a 0.80 WHIP. Pair those numbers with the greatest closer of all-time in Mariano Rivera and you have yourself quite a bullpen.

Soriano will serve as the setup man to Rivera for the next two seasons and than will likely take over as the closer if Rivera decides to retire after his 2-year, $30 million contract is up.

Rivera had 33 saves while posting a 1.80 ERA and a 0.83 WHIP in 2010 so having Soriano behind him will make the back of the Yankees’ bullpen dominant.

The Yankees have been searching for an eighth inning man since Joba Chamberlain has not been able to get it done.

Kerry Wood was brought in last season and did a great job but he has moved on to the Chicago Cubs.

The Yankees recently made a move that brought in lefty Pedro Feliciano. The Yankees now have two effective left-handed pitchers in Feliciano and Boone Logan, who posted a 2.93 ERA last season.

Opposing teams in the American League are going to be facing a difficult task in the later innings of games in 2011.

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Andy Pettitte: Will The New York Yankees’ Veteran Pitcher Hang Up The Cleats?

With the Yankees having missed out on ace pitchers Cliff Lee and Zack Greinke, they are now faced with more bad news.

Veteran lefty Andy Pettitte is leaning towards retirement, which will make the Yankee rotation thinner than it already is.

There are not many options left in free agency, so the Yankees might be forced to make the 38-year old Pettitte a big one-year contract.

Losing Pettitte would be devastating for the Yankees, who currently have Ivan Nova and Sergio Mitre at the back of the rotation.

Pettitte’s veteran leadership and postseason success would be missed greatly in New York, so the Yankees should do whatever they can do bring him back for one more season.

Pettitte went 11-3 with a 3.28 ERA in 21 starts last season and won his 19th career playoff game against the Minnesota Twins in the ALDS.

Pettitte’s 19 playoff wins are the most in MLB history.

The Yankees would love for No. 46 to come back and make another run at the World Series.

I’m sure Pettitte would love to give it another shot after a disappointing loss to the Texas Rangers in last season’s ALCS.

There are some decisions to make for the Yankees, who have not been very active in free agency this off season, so re-signing Pettitte will be important heading into the 2011 season.


Source: YES Network’s Jack Curry on Twitter

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A.J. Burnett: Will the Yankee Pitcher Be Affected By Colin Cowherd Comments?

A.J. Burnett is coming off an extremely disappointing season with the New York Yankees, and as if things cannot get any worse, he has to deal with ESPN Radio’s Colin Cowherd.

Burnett did not need this especially, as he is going to try and bounce back from a dreadful season in 2010.

Cowherd ironically made cowardly comments regarding a divorce between A.J. Burnett and his wife. Cowherd made comments about Burnett’s wife being spiteful and vindictive.

He went on to say that he did not want to get into the rest of the story.

Cowherd now has to deal with criticism regarding his comments.

After these comments from Cowherd, people will wonder if A.J. Burnett is really going through a divorce and If so, where is Cowherd getting his information from?

Burnett’s agent, Darek Braunecker, has stated that the pitcher is not going through a divorce and that Burnett is angry about Cowherd’s comments.

Despite his anger, Braunecker said that Burnett will not respond to Cowherd’s false statements.

Burnett will need to put this behind him and focus on the 2011 season, because the Yankees need him to step up especially after missing out on free agent Cliff Lee.

The 2010 season is one to forget for the hard-throwing righty, as he lost 15 games and posted a 5.26 ERA, both career-worsts.

Burnett only struck out 145 batters, his lowest since 2006 when he only struck out 118.

Cowherd’s comments may affect Burnett, but he needs to let this go and focus on helping the Yankees get back to the World Series.

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Russell Martin: New York Yankees To Aggressively Pursue Free Agent Catcher

Buster Olney of ESPN is reporting that the New York Yankees will now take an aggressive approach in signing free agent catcher Russell Martin. 

The Red Sox were originally favored to land Martin, but after the Carl Crawford deal the Yankees have stepped up their efforts to try and sign him.

Martin would see plenty of playing time in New York, as Jorge Posada would likely play more DH and young talent Jesus Montero would remain in the minors.

The Yankees have already watched the Boston Red Sox trade for first baseman Adrian Gonzalez and sign the aforementioned Crawford; they are not going to sit back and let their rivals improve even more.

The Red Sox have been in need of a catcher since losing Victor Martinez to free agency, so this would be a smart move for the Yankees to improve their roster and keep Martin away from Boston.

Martin spent five years with the Los Angeles Dodgers, where he batted .272 with 54 home runs and 300 RBI. Last season he batted .248 with five home runs and 26 RBI in 97 games.

The Toronto Blue Jays are also in the mix for Martin, along with another unidentified team.

A decision on Martin is expected within the next few days.

Source: Buster Olney on Twitter

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Zack Greinke: Royals Trying to Include Yankees in Trade Talks

It has been rumored already that Kansas City Royals pitcher Zack Greinke is on the New York Yankees’ radar.

It was also reported that Greinke would accept a trade to any team, including big cities, and what bigger city than the Big Apple?

Those rumors were eventually shot down, but Jon Heyman of is reporting that the Royals are indeed trying to include the Yankees in talks about acquiring Zack Greinke.

Although Greinke is a young talent, the Yankees may be hesitant to acquire the 27-year-old ace. 

Greinke has had issues with anxiety in the past, and New York City comes with plenty of it.

Whether the Yankees are interested remains unknown because they are working on signing ace left-hander Cliff Lee. However, if the Yankees fail in signing Lee, Greinke would definitely be the next best option.

The 27-year-old ace won the Cy Young Award in 2009 and is certainly looking to return to that form.

According to Heyman, the Rangers, Brewers, Nationals, Dodgers and Blue Jays are other clubs that are interested in the former Cy Young Award winner.

In 2010 Greinke finished with a 10-14 record, a 4.17 ERA and 181 strikeouts.


Source: Jon Heyman on Twitter.

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MLB Rumors: With Crawford off The Market, Who Is The Next Big Name to Be Signed?

Free agent Carl Crawford signed a monster deal yesterday with the Boston Red Sox.

Crawford signed a seven-year, $142 million deal, a huge move for Boston who recently traded for first baseman Adrian Gonzalez.

With Crawford off the market, who will be the next big name free agent to sign?

Jon Heyman of is reporting that the New York Yankees have offered starter Cliff Lee a seven-year deal. The Yankees originally had a six-year deal worth roughly $140 million.

After the seven-year deals Jayson Werth and Carl Crawford received, teams do not have much of a choice but to offer Lee the same type of deal.

Lee has been on the Yankees radar since the midpoint in the regular season and they are not about to let their top priority get away from them, especially since the Red Sox locked up Carl Crawford.

Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports has reported that Lee will sign with a team by Sunday.

Also around the league, the Baltimore Orioles are working on a trade for shortstop J.J. Hardy, and the Milwaukee Brewers are trying to improve their pitching staff by signing Carl Pavano.

The two sides have yet to reach an agreement as the Brewers do not want to sign Pavano past two years.

Also in the National League, the Chicago Cubs have reportedly contacted the Tampa Bay Rays about pitcher Matt Garza, according to ESPN Chicago.

There are plenty of big moves being made and still some big names available. Expect a few signings and trades over the weekend.


Source: Jon Heyman on Twitter, ESPN Chicago, Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports

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New York Yankees: Wild Ride Over as Derek Jeter Reportedly Signs New 3-Year Deal

The New York Yankees and Derek Jeter have reportedly agreed to a three-year deal worth about $51 million.

There is also an option for a fourth year that is worth less than the $17 million that he will earn on average for the first three years of the deal.

According to Sweeney Murti of WFAN, there are many elements that will determine the final number for the option in Jeter’s deal.

After signing closer Mariano Rivera, the Yankees managed to bring back Jeter and this move is important for both sides. Yankee fans can relax and the Yankee organization does not have to worry about Jeter going to another team.

The YES Network’s Jack Curry has reported that both Jeter and Rivera have agreed to defer some earnings in their deals in order to push their deals along.

Finishing these deals with Mo’ and Jeter were important because now general manager Brian Cashman knows his budget heading into the winter meetings in Orlando, Florida.

It has been reported that the Yankees are going to make a move for free agents Cliff Lee, and possibly outfielder Carl Crawford.

Things got ugly between the Yankees and Derek Jeter because Jeter and his agent were asking for a contract in the range of $22-24 million a year.

Brian Cashman and the Yankees were not willing to budge from their original three-year $45 million deal. It seems that the deciding factor was the option year, and adding $2 million more per year.

The captain will return in 2011. Now it is time for the Yankees to make moves on big-name free agents such as Cliff Lee and Carl Crawford.


Source: Sweeney Murti on Twitter, Jack Curry of the YES Network

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Cincinnati Reds: Bronson Arroyo Signs 3-Year, $35 Million Extension

Cincinnati Reds fans will get to see Bronson Arroyo‘s high leg kick again in 2011.

Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports is reporting that the Cincinnati Reds and starting pitcher Bronson Arroyo have agreed on an extension worth $35 million for the next three years.

Arroyo is coming off his best season with the Reds where he won 17 games, a career high.

Arroyo, 33, finished the 2010 season with a 17-10 record and a 3.88 era during 215 innings of work. Arroyo has sure been an innings eater having pitched over 200 innings in all of his five seasons with the Reds.

This is a big move for the Reds because Arroyo keeps some stability in the Reds rotation.

Arroyo has always been known to give the Reds innings and as long as he remains healthy, he will continue to do so during his next three seasons within Cincinnati.

Certainly, Arroyo did post quality numbers in a contract year, but the fact remains that he also put up solid numbers during his previous four years with the Reds.

The Reds are surely excited to bring Arroyo back next season to defend their National League Central Division title, and to make another run at the playoffs.

Having Arroyo back in a Reds uniform will sure help Cincinnati do that.


Source:  Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal on Twitter

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MLB Free Agency: Carl Crawford Added to the New York Yankees’ Wish List

According to Jon Heyman of, The New York Yankees have interest in outfielder Carl Crawford. Crawford is a pricey free agent that many teams are after and if there is any team that has the money to pay him, It is the New York Yankees.

Heyman is reporting that the meeting can take place as early as next week. Crawford might not make any sense for the Yankees because they already have a crowded outfield, but what an addition Crawford would be for the Yanks.

The meeting will most likely take place at the winter meetings in Orlando, Florida

Crawford has also drawn interest from the Red Sox and the Angels, and the Yankees certainly do not want Crawford to play in Boston next season.

If the Yankees are serious about meeting with Crawford to possibly get a deal done, then they would have to trade Nick Swisher or Brett Gardner.

This is an outfield that already has three capable outfielders. Adding a fourth would not make sense if the Yankees are planning the other three.

Crawford is thought to be asking for a contract in the $100 million range. The Yankees are accustomed to this having giving out $100 million dollar contracts to the likes of CC Sabathia and Mark Teixeira.

Carl Crawford had career highs last season in home runs and runs batted in with 19 and 90. He performed at a high level in hopes to get a big contract, and that will likely happen whether it is with the Yankees or elsewhere.


Source: Jon Heyman on Twitter

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New York Yankees: The Bombers, Mariano Rivera Reach 2-Year, $30 Million Deal

It is being reported that the New York Yankees and closer Mariano Rivera have reached a two-year deal worth $30 million. 

Rivera was originally asking for about $18 million a year and he got very close to that.

This is an extremely important move for the Yankees because they get their closer back, and this also may persuade Derek Jeter to sign as well.

Unlike Jeter, the negotiations between the Yankees and Rivera have gone rather smoothly.

Rivera, 41, is coming off one of his best seasons in 2010 when he posted an incredible 1.80 ERA with a 0.83 WHIP. Rivera saved 33 out of 38 games in 2010 and was once again one of the most effective closers in the league.

There was no way the Yankees were going to let Mo’ walk, because if they did, they would have some pretty large shoes to fill. 

At 41 years of age, Rivera has shown that he can still pitch as he gets older. The future Hall of Fame inductee remains one of the most dominant pitchers in baseball and as long as he is healthy over the next two seasons, he will continue to be dominant.

Now that the Rivera deal is done, hopefully Jeter will not be too far behind him as the Yankees would love to end this roller coaster between the two sides.


Source: Christian Red, New York Daily News

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