Saturday, January 15, 2011

The Soriano Enigma

If two years ago, you were to tell me that Rafael Soriano would eventually become the Yankees setup man/ closer, I would have done one of two things:
1. Laughed.
2. Asked "Who?"

Before you griping that I don't know who he is, I KNOW who he is. He's played unsuccessfully for the Braves for a few seasons, and after being traded to the Rays for a few prospects, has skyrocketed in value thanks to his tendency to pick up saves. He is a decent closer, but by no means should I have cared...that is, until now.

Like it or not, I have to face the fact that when Mariano Rivera retires, that Rafael Soriano is going to have to be the Yankees new closer. I'm not entirely sold on the fact that this guy's gonna be our closer, picking up where the Greatest Closer That Ever Lived left off. But I can't do a thing about it. I wasn't very happy when we traded for Nick Swisher, but now look where he's gone to.

Look...even though I'm not particularly fond of the man, there's still a part of me that might enjoy when he takes the mound in pinstripes. Even if Mo's still active...if he's just taking a night off, I could see him pitching a great night in relief. After the cinderella season that he just had, I wouldn't be surprised if he churns out a few more.

In the end, it all amounts to this: A good team isn't truly good unless they have a decent closer. Without a decent closer, the team has no hope in capping off a win, or securing things in a final inning. They need a closer, whose only determination is to send three batters back to where they came from one by one. To make a name for himself as one of the greatest, and people everywhere will agree.

Teams need one of those closers.

The Bronx has two.

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