NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Has Rafael Soriano thrown his last pitch in pinstripes?
The reliever has opted out of the final year of his deal with the Yankees, the team announced on Wednesday.
New York is expected to “counter by making him the $13.3-million qualifying offer,” CBSSports.com and WFAN baseball insider Jon Heyman reported. Teams have until midnight on Friday to make qualifying offers to their own free agents.
Soriano signed a three-year, $35 million contract with the Yankees in 2011.
He had a strong year serving as closer after Mariano Rivera’s season-ending knee injury. Of his 44 saves with the Yankees, 42 came in 2012.
Last week, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said Rivera was mulling whether to return or retire. Cashman still hasn’t heard from MLB’s all-time saves leader, according to the New York Post.
Rivera’s decision is expected to have an impact on the Yankees’ talks with Soriano.
The Bombers also have decisions to make on soon-to-be free agents Hiroki Kuroda, Russell Martin, Andy Pettitte, Ichiro Suzuki and Nick Swisher.
Will Soriano be with the Yankees in 2013? Make your prediction in the comments below…