Current offer to Mo: 3 years, $45 million

Hava Molina
Report: Jays interested in Roger, Andy

That’s according to Tyler Kepner of the Times. Is anyone else a bit baffled as to why Mo hasn’t accepted yet? Does he think there’s some team willing to offer him four years at $55, $60 million?

Look, the game is up. We know Mo is crying about not getting a new contract back in the spring. Get over it. For a guy who is portrayed so reverently in Last Night of the Yankee Dynasty, Mo is acting like a teenager here. The Yankees have made a more than generous offer, which figures not to be topped by another bidder. What, does he think the Dodgers will outbid the Yanks just because Joe Torre is now the manager?

I’m honestly surprised the offer got this high. Three years, $40 million was an offer not likely to be topped. And now the Yankees upped the offer by $5 million in hopes of signing Mo before other teams could bid. Well, now that other teams can, the point of that $5 million is kind of moot.

What the Yankees should do, though they certainly won’t, is let Mo field offers from other teams. Hey, he wanted to test the market, right? So when teams are coming in with far less than three years, $45 million, the Yankees can say: “Mo, we’ll match your best offer. But you blew signing that three-year, $45 million deal. Just like we blew signing you cheaper back in Spring Training.”

After all, this should work both ways, right?

Hava Molina
Report: Jays interested in Roger, Andy
  • Ben K.

    In my opinion, Rivera’s really pushing his luck here. I can’t imagine any other team offering him more than two years at $10 mil per. So the Yanks are basically offering him $25 million and one year more than anyone else. If he doesn’t like that, get out of here. As you said, we get it; Mo’s unhappy the Yanks didn’t want to negotiate in Spring Training following a season in which he missed a month to some mysterious elbow injury.

    At this point, I agree. Pull back the offer and tell him we’ll match anything anyone else puts on the table plus a little more. Otherwise, there’s always Joba.

  • Keith

    agreed. noone is going to give him $15 million per… and that little Dodgers jab was cute.

    He’s theb est option out there, and I want him back, but that offer seems to be a little over the top for me. I’d actually offer him 2 years at $30 million, with an option for the third season.

  • Relaunch

    Very well said. I’m shocked the Yanks even offered him this much. I was from the start opposed to a 3 year deal. Now the dollars look dumb too. Lets see what other team will pay 15mill for 70innings a year. None. They should take offer back.

  • 218F

    Wow that is really an overpay by the Yanks. I hope this is sort of for lifetime achievement because if they think that is all reflective of market value we may be in trouble in the future. I doubt anyone makes an offer to Mo at this point (why would you wast your time if you are another team its absolutely silly to top this and if all you do is match he is likely going back to NY). Hopefully he is smart enough to recognize this for the gift it is and sign. I have a little fear he will cry “collusion” at the lack of other offers.

  • barry

    Mo is being petty hes not really even worth that much. I agree since he didnt take that offer right away, take it off the table. Watch some other teams will offer him 3 years 30 million or something like that and we’ll probably get him for 3/35.

  • Mark

    He will definetly re-sign. He seemed to have a chip on his shoulder, perhaps due to Bernie’s departure and Yanks making him wait. One things for sure, Cashman’s decision to wait on Mo and Posada cost the franchise.

    • Relaunch

      Really sounds like you know what you are talking about. Not giving extensions to a 36 year old catcher and a 37 year old closer is smart, not costing the franchise. It seemed to have backfired for this situation, but majority of the time, its the correct thing to do.

  • Tom

    Jeesh, that offer sounds insane. Even the 3 for $40M sounds high. I wonder how much of a hand Hank Steinbrenner had in creating that ridiculous amount. This doesn’t seem like a calculating Cashman offer. I agree with everyone, pull that stupid offer, then counter with a little more than the best offer he gets. I say something similar to what barry mentioned, maybe 3 for $36.

  • Ivan

    Lets be honest here, other than Torre, they have treated the old yankee guys (bernie, Posada and Mo and hell even jeter) very well.

    I don’t wanna hear people say that the yankees treat their old gaurds wrong.

    I mean come on, 97M for a 36 year old catcher and 38 closer. I love Mo, hell he’s my fav yankee but if Mo turn this deal down, (and I doubt it) this makes him look bad. Nevertheless, this is a business, I didn’t kill A-Rod for opting out, why should I kill guys Mo and Po for making money. It’s a business and I understand that you know. Hell I’ll do the same thing if I was Mo.

  • LiveFromNewYork

    We get it. Mo’s pissed. But the Yankees are throwing a lot of money at him…I would get over my attitude very quickly for that kind of money. He needs to screw his head back on straight.

    Mo has a lot of good will built up in NY and it’s turned into a ridiculous amount of money. Now he needs to stop acting like a baby and TAKE IT. He has not besmirched his image throughout his years in NY. No need to start now. We love you Mo. We know you love us, so get over your snit and take the very LARGE amount of money you’re being offered.

    I think that Mo and Po are the lucky recipients of the PR disaster of the Torre contract and Hank is not about to lose these guys and suffer the wrath of the NY fans. so get over it like Jorge did and SIGN.

  • redbug

    I think Mo has every right to be ticked off. If not for him the Yanks never would’ve been in the PS since ’96. He’s the best closer of all time. A Yankee MVP. He’s never gone the free agent route before. He’s been worth every penny plus a whole lot more.

    He asked for a 2 yr extension. He wanted to pitch in the new stadium. The Yanks declined. Just for what he did for them since ’96, he should’ve been signed. I think he’s hurt. He watched what happened w/ Bernie and now Joe. He’s probably not feeling the way he always has about being a Yankee.

    • Relaunch

      Please, that was just pathetic. We should all start crying because he isn’t getting paid enough.

    • Barry

      You know you’re right we should of given Arod a completely new contract for 10 years 400 mil, why the fuck not? I mean hell he’ll still be doing this when he’s 42. It’s common sense that the yankees wait and see, Mo is still questionable for the next 3 years, can we do without him, no, but it was a smart choice to wait to see how this season played out.

  • E-ROC

    Mo needs to stop with the crap already. He has a 3yr $45 million contract on the table and still waiting. Now, it’s an insult that he hasn’t accepted yet. I wouldn’t be shocked if he didn’t because he might feel that disrespected. He should take a page from Todd Jones.

  • Sonny M.

    Not to rain on anybodies parade or be the spoiled sport here, but what if the Yanks withdrew the offer, and said we will match the highest offer out there, and Mo comes back and says he has a 4 year $50 million offer, how would the yankees know if he is lying or not?

    In fact he could say he has a 3 year $46 million deal on the table, and in case anyone forgets, if the yankees “call around” or try and check (just trying, not even succeeding), they (and MLB) get hit with another collusion lawsuit, which they all would again lose.

    The Yanks can not verify if Mo gets a better offer or not, they are not allowed, they can not openly share information, baseball has been down this road 3 times, and each time they lost, and its treble damages.

    Long story short, they can say this is our final offer, or say we will match, but if they say they will match, Mo’s agents, if they have the common sense of a screwdriver, will claim to have gotten a better deal, the yanks then call BS, and see what happens, or try and find out if its a bluff at which point they get screwed for triple.

    Please note that MLBPA has been sabre rattling already about collusion this year, regarding A-Rod, but would grab onto anything with just a little meat for the oppurtunity.

  • LiveFromNewYork

    re redbug

    PULEESE. He’s HURT? Hurt? Give me a break. This is a business. He’s being offered A LOT OF MONEY to do his job.

    If he’s HURT, what are they supposed to do? Call him up and make kissy noises in the phone? What does HURT have to do with ARE YOU GOING TO PITCH NEXT YEARS FOR A WHOLE LOT OF MONEY? What do the Yankees do for hurt? Kiss it and make it better? Grovel? Pine away? WHAT?

    They do what they can do which is throw a BOAT LOAD of money at him. They ‘ve done that. Now put away the HURT and play ball.

  • deadrody

    How, exactly, is he pissed about the spring. I could see if the team made exceptions for some players but not for others, but they didn’t. The fact is, this season, not signing Posada in the spring probably cost them a LOT of money. All that is evidence that it is simply the way they do things. Is that really so hard to understand.

    I would not expect to find anyone but fellow millionaires that is going to have much sympathy for the guy. It’s a bit ridiculous at this point.

  • LiveFromNewYork

    And how they treated Bernie and Joe is not a good argument. There was no room on the roster for an aging, can’t field for crap, Bernie Williams. YES, the man was talented and much loved and could still swing a mean bat in his last year (I went to many games where he lit up the place) but we had the nastiest offense in the MLB. We did not need another bat. We cannot hold onto players for SENTIMENTAL reasons. Yes, we should treat them with respect but Bernie is DELUSIONAL about the level he can play at. Should we STOKE those delusions? No.

    Even if Torre was disrespected, that is not a reason for Mo to hold up the signing. If he’s pissed…fine but GET OVER IT.

    The Torre/Williams decisions were business and the Williams decision was very good business esp because Bernie, much as we love him, doesn’t seem to know it’s time to hang up the cleats.

  • Kevin23

    Now the Yanks aren’t allowed to get rid of players who are past their effective prime just because they USED to be great? Ridiculous logic.

    How about this: LET MO GO!! Did anyone else watch how many times over the past two seasons he allows big hits with two strikes? How can the most interactive sports fans in the country be missing this? He just cant throw the ball past guys in big situations. He is not anywhere near the dominant closer he used to be. The sooner the old guard of late-nineties Yankees fans realize this, the better. But NY media will never pass up an opportunity to shame us Yankee fans into believing we owe more to our players than anyone else. Really? I remember when players WANTED to play in pinstripes. To the point where they might even consider LESS money to play there. How times change, and people are sheep to the story lines invented by the media way in advance.

    • D

      Last year, Mo put up his highest K/9 since 1996…that kind of runs contrary to your assertion that he can’t put people away w/ 2 strikes.

      And money is free (no cap)…as long as it’s 3 years or less, I couldn’t care less what dollar amount they give him…we all know Mo takes his salary really seriously, $6 mil over 3 years isn’t going to sink the franchise.

  • tony from the bronx

    agian the yanks always seem to have to over pay.Market at the time for outfielders was no more then 10mil.Yanks gave Matsui 13mil and damon 13mil.Rivera has been the best paid closer for the last 8yrs He has averaged 10mil per when the going rate for closers was 6mil expect when the Mets overpaid for Billy boy.Posada had a 5yr 50mil contract that the Yanks couldnt move He has a career year on his walk year and the yanks again have to over pay .If Mo doesnt sign by tomorrow they shoul pull the offer We should not pay for past service when these guys were paid plenty good

  • Kevin23


    I’m so glad you can pull out one stat and run with it like you know something. Let me reel you back into reality. He did not put away guys. He always managed to either get behind in the count, or allowed hits with two strikes. That is NOT the mark of a dominant closer worth 13M+ a year. Sorry.

    So what if he had more K’s? That is what often happens when you see more batters who are swinging harder because they smell weakness. He also didn’t put up saves until two months into the season, allowed several big walk-offs, and bitched all spring. Its better to watch games instead of trolling stats. That’s how we ended up with Giambi and A-Rod.

    • Joseph P.

      If you can produce a stat that compares Mo’s two-strike hits with those of other closers, I’ll start to believe your argument. Your eyes can never see the whole picture.

    • dan

      If I’m not mistaken, a strikeout occurs when there are two strikes and the pitcher then “puts the batter away” with a third. You must realize that he “put batters away” at a higher rate than he ever has since he took over as closer.

  • Sonny M.

    Not to knock you Kevin,

    But Mo hasn’t blown more then 4 saves in 4 years, and while his strikeout rate was up (which you have now formed some kind of mental theory for), his other stats didn’t change much (though they did go up slightly except for his era with ballooned). Basically, Mo was his usual self, doing his usual thing, day in and day out, not much of a change.

    Now as for getting behind in the counts or giving up hits with 2 strikes, I watched those games, and didn’t see that, and if you can show me numbers, thats fine.

    That said, all in all, I do NOT think he is worth 45 million for 3 years, simply because, he is at the end of his career, and there is not a team out there that I believe would pay him that kind of money for 3 years (or even for 2 years).

  • ArchStanton

    I have to agree on Mo, he led the league last year in BWSW per 9 (that’s Batters Who Smelled Weakness per 9 innings for the uninformed).

  • Barry

    Bring Bernie Back! B-cubed

  • Kevin23

    Joe P and Sonny,

    Keep up the blind faith. I suppose Mussina has lost nothing on his fast ball either right? Mo has not been his “usual” self in years. He flashes brilliance on occasion against teams like Tampa Bay, but if you honestly think guys aren’t swinging away without fear lately against Mo, then you are not watching the same Yankees. You must be watching the 99 Yankees re-runs on YES. And since when is allowing 4 walk-off HR’s an acceptable thing for a $13M closer? That’s crazy talk!

    Seriously though, how can real Yankees fans not notice that he had only a hand full of trouble-free innings all season. Watch how often he puts up a two strike count and cant close the deal without 7 more pitches, or a new batter. Or how often he puts the first few men on base. Or how many times his best pitches are fouled off when they used to be un-hittable. Again, not the domination you’d want from $13M. Stop preventing your eyes from seeing it the next time you watch, and you’ll see it clear as day. Or you can keep your eyes closed and hope for some of that late nineties magic from a 40 year old.

    • Sonny M.


      1) I did say I would NOT bring back Mo for this kind of money, in your emotional outburst, you missed that key detail.

      2)4 walk off homers in a year? While I think 13 million is way to high, there are closers all over the record books who had great seasons and gave up more, hell, I think I could make a better case against MO, then you can, and I’m not even trying.

      3)Mussina is done, but thats not relevent, I prefer Ian Kennedy at this point in time.

      4)As for swinging without fear, if those hitters are smelling fear its their upper lips, either that or Mo should never shower again, because its the same smell that Joba is giving off, along with just about anybody with strikeouts, though for the records, when I struck out, I wasn’t swinging harder because I smelled fear, I did it because I missed the pitch, but next time I get K’d, I’m using your line.

      5)I never expect a 7 pitch inning out of a guy, MO, gets 3 up, and 3 down consistantly, he gets the save, has maintened one of the best save percentages in baseball, and still gets the outs.

      6)Last time, I did not think he is worth 45 million over 3 years, here is the thing with closers, while Mo did good this year, as least according to watching him this year, and looking at the stats (which are records of what has happened), closers do not age that well, in one, 2 tops ,I do not think he will be closing, closers tend to drop off a table, kind of like hitting a wall when age catches up with them. The style of pitching that MO tends to follow, or gameplan, does not allow for much deterioration of skills, which, based on his usuage, and other factors, is going to kick in……also, there is not a team in baseball that would pay him the money he is asking for for a variety of reasons, only the Yankees can.

      But the idea that he is washed up now, is absurd, equally or even more absurd is concluding his strikeout stats have to do with hitters swinging harder because they think he is weak, that would mean hitters thought Nolan Ryan was peeing himself, and when Randy Johnson was in his prime, they were over confident and ready to kill him, but now that his totals are crap, they obviously are in deep fear of him, and crap themselves when they see him.

      Think about what your saying for a second, or at least give a decent read through.

  • LiveFromNewYork

    Let’s simmer down.

    Mo gave me plenty of agita last season. There were so many games when we needed him to be lights out and he would draaaaaaaaaaaaag out the inning, though most of them he won.

    BUT he’s still the best closer in baseball, just not as lights out as he once was which was damn near super human and we ALL know that.

    Mo’s continued success and/or eventual decline is both in front of us. We know that. He’s a baseball great who has lots of good stuff left but may give us more heart attacks than we’re used to from him over the next few years.

    The argument is not that he is or is not worth the money. He’s worth it…but it’s still A LOT of money and he needs to just freaking sign.

    We should not be sentimental about him until he retires and he should not be sentimental about Bernie or Joe because they are not going to be paying his heating bills next winter.

    We all (including Mo) need to drop the sentiment, realize a good deal, and take it. That’s what we need to do.

    • steve (different one)

      do we really think Mo is still the best closer in baseball? i’m not sure about that.

  • Sonny M.

    Looking over his numbers, I think this past season, the closest season I can see is 1997 by all accounts.

    A darn good season by any closers standard.

    That said, I don’t see any team in MLB (outside of the yankees) that will give Mo, a 3 year deal worth 45 million. I do think he is right now one of the best closers in baseball, and the best all time, but sometimes luck helps, if he doesn’t sign this deal, which would be foolish, I would be stunned, but I don’t see him going anywhere.

    That also said, the Yankees do need him, but they should not overpay for him, based on how great he was/is/ but based on how much the maxiumum you believe he can get from outside of you is. I expect him to be his usual self next season, but I also know, that the teams that could afford him, have closers, and are not going to shell out the bucks for him, and the teams that could use him, can’t afford him.

    Its a perfect storm.

  • mantra

    97.4 million for two old guys. WOW!!

    • Barry

      Posada is well worth the money.

  • Kevin23


    I’m not sure where you get the emotional outburst stuff from. Nor do I wish to address your laundry list of arguments for an argument we’re not having. I never said he sucked, my good man. That’s where you went wrong. Nor did I say his stats sucked. There are things only stats can tell you, and there are things they can never tell you. I think true fans know what I’m saying. Its a fool’s game to build a future team by old stat lines. He’s not worth the money they offered. AND they dont NEED him that bad. They’ve got Joba. He’s Mo from 1997. Get Santana next year and you wont need him as a starter anyhow. He could be a three inning closer for a few years even. Unlimited options for big games. All the Yankee fans I know are know sweating bullets when Mo pitches in a one run game with guys on these days. Stats will come just via being on a successful team and having opportunities. He’s good. Not great. We basically agree, so I’m not sure why your up in arms. I’m just asking, is pride worth a few big games? A few dozen? He’s cutting it closer and closer with time. Hell, the cutter didn’t cut for half of last season, remember? He threw the two seamer instead and didn’t get his usual results. I’m sorry if you don’t see what I see as a fan. But I like knowing people fear the Yankees. Stat lines don’t tell that story. But its important in the 9th inning. No knock on Mo, but everyone knows he’s hittable now. Good. But hittable. Worth $5M tops.

    • Joseph P.

      Please cut the “true fan” bullshit. Just because you see things 1) doesn’t mean they’re accurate observations and 2) doesn’t make you any more a fan than anyone in this discussion.

  • Brian

    This just in: Mo wants to be signed out to the Stadium after the next Stadium. He’s given up on “years” as a term in the contract and opted for “venues.” Oh no wait, that’s A-Rod.

  • dan

    This was brought up before by Joe/Kevin 23…

    Joe said, “If you can produce a stat that compares Mo’s two-strike hits with those of other closers, I’ll start to believe your argument. “

    There is such a stat, but it compares his numbers with two strikes to himself. So We’ll compare his 2 strike numbers from 2007 to his past years in order to see if the current Mo is as good as he was in the past…sounds reasonable enough

    The statistic is tOPS (defined as the OPS+ of the split relative to the player’s overall OPS, and lower=better)

    2007 tOPS with 2 strikes: 42
    Career OPS+ with 2 strikes: 52

    Sorry Kevin, Rivera struck more batters out and batters did worse overall with 2 strikes than his career rate.

    • Joseph P.

      When the count was 0-2 this year, Mo allowed two hits. Two goddamn hits in 32 at bats. In a 1-2 count, batters were 10 for 66. In a 2-2 count they were 8 for 40. In a 3-2, they were 6 for 19.

      So we’re really talking about Mo having trouble with 3-2 pitches.

      I suppose that still leaves open Kevin’s argument that Mo gets two strikes and fails to finish the job. He got to a 3-2 count 25 times. In the other 138 two-strike situations, batters only got a hit 20 times.

      His pitches per plate appearance was pretty much on par with the past three years. For what it’s worth, he used more pitches per plate appearances in his “immortal” years of 1996 through 1998.

      His percentage of strikes thrown this year was the second highest of his career (2001). 31 percent of his strikes were fouls, which is his career average. His percentage of swinging strikes was 18 percent, also average for his career. And his percentage of strikes put in play was actually below his career average.

      Kevin can tell us what he sees, but the mind can alter memories. These are objective stats. And we’re not even talking broad averages. What I’m presenting is pitch-by-pitch data.

      The problem with Mo this year was that he took a while to get into a groove. This has been a trend of years past. It was exacerbated this year because the Yankees sucked so bad in April that Mo didn’t get enough appearances to get into said groove. Once he did, he was one of the top closers in baseball, save for a spell in August where he had some trouble. But, again, there isn’t a closer in the league who can shut down every single game he enters.

  • Rob_in_CT

    Yikes, that’s a big offer. If Mo doesn’t take it, let him walk. Enough.

    I love Mariano. I still think he’s one of the very best in the game (though not THE best). He will be good for some years to come. But he *is* 38, and he is a relief pitcher who will throw, what, 75 innings/year, max? For this, he will be paid more money (annually) than Jorge Posada? Damn.

    They’re overpaying so they can put Joba in the rotation. I understand that, and agree with it to an extent. But 3/45… damn.

  • Kevin23


    Nice work. I went looking for such a stat yesterday (tOPS) and couldn’t find it. Where’d you get it?

    I’m not going to pretend to have a great answer for his good stat there. What I do maintain is that he is not the closer he was, and certainly not the best in baseball. Good for 80% of teams, but not on par with K-Rod, Papelbon, etc. anymore. Stats tend to be lagging indicators of a player’s ultimate decline anyway. Again, Yankee fans should have learned this lesson time after time. If you look hard enough, you’ll always find a reason to dole out more money. Try taking a critical approach and its overwhelmingly against Mo making that dough.

    Joe P- So defensive! TRUE FANS will call it like they see it every time. And I used the term in a very reasonable way, so stop acting like I’m making it a contest. Maybe I’m wrong about Mo slipping. Maybe you are so zen-like in your observation of games that you confuse nothing with the final stat lines whereas I remember my own emotional responses. Or maybe you watch about as much Yankee baseball as most NY sports writers (highlights on ESPN). Either way, relax and enjoy while Yanks front office “makes it rain” for no good reason (pleasing the media and the hardcore fan-base is not a “good” reason because they’re not going anywhere regardless). Its a luxury only Yanks fans have. Will that approach win big games in October? Hasn’t yet.

    • Joseph P.

      We all remember our own emotional responses. But there comes a time when emotions can cloud your judgment (not just in baseball, but in all facets of life).

      I’m not saying Mo is the best closer in baseball. At this point, you have K-Rod, Nathan, Papelbon, Putz, and Jenks up there, plus even Izzy had a quality rebound year. And then there are emerging guys like Jon Broxton and Manny Corpas. I also very clearly said that even 3 years, $40 million is too much. But these are the Yankees, and they can afford to overpay.

      My point was that your emotional reactions to Mo’s decline are a bit extreme. Yes, he’s not the same guy he was four years ago. But he’s still one of the top closers in the game.

      • Kevin23

        Fair enough. How about we simplify then. How much is he worth to you? To me, it’s $6M/yr. and that includes and $1M/yr. bonus out of respect for the past.

        If you don’t agree with $15M either, and you agree that he’s maybe #5 in the AL as far as closers. AND you, I think, agree that Joba would fill in nicely for him if need be. So how much should they realistically pay him?

        And are you really saying he didn’t make you sweat more in the last two seasons than in the entirety of his career before then? This is my whole point. Baseball is a great sport because there are so many intangibles. Stats just don’t tell the story. They wreak of possibility, though, which is why Boras is so successful. I find it prudent to avoid rabbit holes, and trust my instincts. Stats come last in my book. I’d rather have a guy who does everything the right way and never has a break out season than a guy you love in the pre-season and resent in November every single year. But enough about A-Rod…

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