Report: Soria willing to setup for Yankees

Monday Night Open Thread
The Pitching Backup Plans

Via Andrew Marchand: Right-hander Joakim Soria is willing to pitch as a setup man for the Yankees just so he could have an opportunity to play with Mariano Rivera, his idol. “If the Yankees call, we will be all ears,” said Soria’s agent, who has heard from eight teams so far. “If there is a fit, Joakim would be elated to work with Mo. He would close everywhere except there.”

Soria, 28, missed all of last season with his second Tommy John surgery, but was one of the game’s very best relievers prior to that. Marchand says the Yankees have not yet contacted Soria’s camp, but that’s not unusual this early in the offseason. New York has had on-and-off trade interest in the former Royals closer through the years and they were going to take him in the 2006 Rule 5 Draft before Kansas City beat them to the punch, so I imagine a phone call will occur at some point. The Yankees need relief help and landing Soria on a one-year, incentive-laden deal with an option for 2014 and the promise that he’s first in line to take over as closer following Rivera’s retirement would be a fantastic get.

Monday Night Open Thread
The Pitching Backup Plans
  • Richard Leo

    will 4M plus incentive be enough for Soria?

    • Cano fan #1

      I think 4m is ok

  • JobaWockeeZ

    Why not?

    • The Big City of Dreams

      And if it works out he replaces Mo in 2014

      • Louis

        Are we forgetting about Drob?

        • The Big City of Dreams

          I like Drob but why can’t it be Soria closing and Rob setting up

          • Louis

            Because Drob is better?

  • Robinson Tilapia

    I’m game. Sure.

  • CF

    Get this done Cash. Low risk, high reward.

  • Bob Buttons

    I love this guy and would enjoy seeing him become the heir, but deep down inside I want to see a home-grown guy like Robertson or Chamberlain or Montgomery to get a shot at the gig after the retirement by #42.

  • Kevin G.

    Replace Soriano with Soria

    • FIPster Doofus

      No. (Get it?)

      But seriously, I’d love if that happened.

      • Anthony

        See what ya did there.

  • http://none Ton Lon ton

    Sign him now
    Not later

    • MB923


    • Klemy

      Agreed. Do this.

  • jjyank


    Pretty awesome late game bullpen, no? I’m excited.

    • Kevin G.

      Add Logan, one of Rapada/Cabral, and eventually Montgomery

      • Cesar “Stairs” Cabral


  • vin

    Report: Soria willing to be paid by the Yankees

    • Ted Nelson

      It’s basically the opposite. The report is saying he may be willing to come to the Yankees even if it means getting no saves, and therefore probably getting fewer free agent dollars down the road.

      • Billygoat Gruff

        Who said he doesn’t think the Yankees wouldn’t have the best offer this year AND next?

        • Ted Nelson

          I’m using that whole logic thing…

          Free agent relievers are generally rewarded for saves. The Yankees aren’t very likely to double someone coming off TJS’ salary compared to the next highest bidder. That is pretty much the rule for a good closer compared to an elite set-up man in FA (probably 3x for an elite closer). The Yankees do often seem to bid against themselves for free agents, but I don’t think it goes to that extent.

          • I Live In My Mom’s Basement

            Your theory holds water for the typical case. But in this case, Soria has proven himself as a closer; what he needs to do now is prove he is healthy.

      • vin

        Soriano was willing to get paid by the Yankees. For a guy like Soria, coming off his second TJ surgery, only really eligible for a short term deal, he’s looking to go to the highest bidder. He already has “The Proven Closer” tag. Saves are less of an issue right now for him. Seems like every year there’s a FA closer who claims he is willing to go to the Bronx. The big test is if he would go to the Yanks while another team is offering more money.

        • Ted Nelson

          Soriano got a three year deal worth over $35 million. It gave him a relatively long-term guarantee and more money than we know of him getting offered to close.

          Soria is not necessarily in that situation. He’s not necessarily looking to go to the highest bidder, because the highest bidder is likely going to be marginally higher than all the other bidders. If his goal is to maximize his earnings, he’s looking to close so that he can pile up saves and get paid next year. If he’s piling up saves he can still falter a little coming back from TJS and get paid. If he is anything short of spectacular as a set-up man (and the difference between spectacular and pretty good for a RP can be a few bloppers dropping in and a few gusts of wind over the course of the season) he risks losing the “proven closer” tag and gaining the “washed-up former closer” tag.

          • I Live In My Mom’s Basement

            It seems a bit shaky to presume that professional baseball GMs are complete simpletons in their decision-making processes. I believe the vogue for several years has been to hire Ivy League graduates who are able to do a little more than write pithy tags on post-it notes.

  • Conor

    I would love it, but it seems to great to be true.

  • Blake

    Rivera, Robertson, Soria, Joba, Logan , Montgomery……pretty tough pen potentially

  • Drew

    Yes to all of this.

  • Francesa

    I’m hearing Eli Whiteside will be his personal catcher.

  • http://none the mick

    humberto sanchez anyone

    • jjyank


    • JobaWockeeZ

      Ah the famous hungry hungry Humberto. Haven’t heard of him since like Nam.

      • Kevin G.

        Melvin Crousett?

        • JobaWockeeZ

          Wow bringing 2009 back!

    •!/AngeloInNY Angelo

      I’d prefer Alan Horne, Tim Battle or Bronson Sardinha, so no thanks.

      I would have said Christian Garcia, but…

  • Get Phelps Up

    Keep SoRoMo intact!

  • JobaTheHeat62

    i would love this

  • Slappy McWaterbug

    I just got a roster-related boner.

  • dan gen


    • Need Pitching & Hitting


      • Billygoat Gruff

        Exactly. No different now. All about the dollar.

        • JobaWockeeZ

          Then the last thing he would say the the biggest spending team is that he’ll gladly set up for Mo.

          • JobaWockeeZ

            to the*

            • Need Pitching & Hitting

              He didn’t say he would take less $ to be a set up man for the Yankees, just that he was willing to do it.

              • Ted Nelson

                That he’s willing to do it implies that he’s willing to take a huge risk of forgoing future earnings. He’s very unlikely to get a good deal for 2013. It’s his second TJS. Incentives can’t be performance based, they have to be playing time based. He can make a lot more money on an annual basis from 2014 onward if he comes back strong than he can in 2013.

            • Billygoat Gruff

              So the last thing he would say to a bidding team is that he would sign with the big market Yankees? I would fire my agent if he told teams I wouldn’t sign with the Yankees.

    • RetroRob

      The Yankees are a team that players most want to play for, but also the team most listed on “no trade” lists. Leverage. Money.

    • rek4gehrig

      Don’t they all :-) Common sense always prevails

  • Logan

    they will probably try to lock things up with their own guys (mo, kuroda, and pettitte) before moving onto other FA’s

    • MannyGeee

      not if Soria is coming cheap and easy. if he’s a lock & load low price deal, then you get him.

      • Cris Pengiucci

        Yes. They can work on multiple FAs at the same time. Preliminary conversations wouldn’t necessarily involve Cashman.

  • MB923

    Houdini back to the 7th inning then, maybe occasionally pitching the 8th if there were off days needed for Soria. Or for Rivera, which would make Soria the closer that day.

    • G

      This is actually an improvement. Soria has spent his career locking down full innings (generally, obviously there are exceptions). Theoretically this could free Robertson from being attached to a single inning and allow him to move around depending on where his best skill (stranding men) is needed.

      • jim p

        The Binder is all powerful, and as it is decreed, a reliever must have an inning, regardless of game situation.

      • Ted Nelson

        That is much easier said than done. It’s not a video game. A RP has to warm up, can’t be dry humped too often, and has to get somewhat regular work. They tried to do the fireman thing with DRob early in 2011, actually, and he got dry humped to death but rarely got into games. If you get a guy up every time one man gets on after the 6th (because you have to get him up well before the jam if you want him to be warm when the jam happens), you’re going to end up warming him up a lot and not putting him in a lot. And if you do put him in with a man on in the sixth, perhaps the bases get loaded in the 8th and you could really use him more then. The fireman role is more theoretical than practical.

  • Andrew

    Isn’t there even a little concern that Soria is coming off his 2nd TJ surgery? The success rate for guys with one TJ surgery is pretty good, but my understanding is that the success rate for guys with 2 TJ surgeries isn’t nearly as good.

    • Ted Nelson

      There’s concern, but that’s why most people think he’s a candidate for a low-base salary, incentive laden deal.

    • Mike Axisa

      Oh yes, definitely. The track record for 2x TJS guys isn’t good at all. Capuano is pretty much the only one who made it 200 IP without another major arm problem.

  • JLC 776

    This was a welcome story to wake up to! Hot Stove finally has me excited!

  • mike

    What sort of trade value would a guy like joba have?

    • MannyGeee

      not enough to warrant moving him. he will get you exactly what he is… a middle relief arm, maybe a 4OF.

      Basically, what this team is chock full of.

      • jjyank

        This. Nobody is giving something of value for Joba coming off his two injuries.

        • The Big City of Dreams

          How the mighty have fallen

  • pounder

    Not gonna happen,not with the payroll limit looming.

    • jjyank

      Why not? Soria will probably only get a 1 year deal.

      • Ted Nelson

        Because people seem to enjoy assuming the worse will happen. Especially in regards to things they don’t really understand.

  • MannyGeee

    Yes to Soria…. NO to everyone deeming Montgomery as any real part of this bullpen for 2013

    • nsalem

      Montgomery’s WHIP has gone down as he has ascended each level. He was dominant at Trenton. He if head a good ST and continued to do the same at Scranton why wouldn’t you want him here? Soria at the right price I agree with you.

      • MannyGeee

        Not that I “wouldn’t want him here”… but an old friend used to tell us about a microwave burrito. let the kid get here, then lets bank on him. Don’t crown his ass just yet.

        Hell, bank on Aardsma first. he’s almost fully healed (fingers crossed) and has a great track record in the bigs.

    • Ted Nelson

      Dude is already dominating AA and AA+ (AzFL) this season. If he doesn’t make it to MLB next season I would be surprised. He’s a relief pitcher.

      • MannyGeee

        You know who else pitched really well in Trenton? Kei Igawa

        I would be EXTREMELY surprised if he did show up any time before September 1.

        • nsalem

          That is true, Igawa wasn’t terrible in the minors. I think this is a different story. Ofcourse he may not be ready for the majors right now. However up to know he has struck out exactly 40% of the batters he has faced in the minor leagues. I think that is special. All I said was that if he continues on that path in Scranton don’t you think it would at least deserve a shot with the Yankees earlier in the season?

  • Andrew

    I guess I would like to see what the rumored salary figures are before I really pass judgement on this. I mean, if he’s coming to NYY on a deal like the one Aardsma got, then wonderful. But if we’re talking a base salary in the $4-5M range + incentives, then the Yankees are better off with other options.

  • Wayne

    Do we lose a draft pick if we sign him

    • I Live In My Mom’s Basement

      No, KC declined their option.