On WFAN: Girardi Says Team Could Break Spring Training Without Naming Closer


SAN DIEGO (CBSNewYork/AP) — The New York Yankees never made an offer to re-sign closer David Robertson, preferring to add Andrew Miller and get an extra draft pick next June.

Robertson agreed late Monday to a $46 million, four-year contract with the Chicago White Sox.

Yankees general manager Brian Cashman revealed Tuesday he had no interest in retaining Robertson once New York agreed Friday to a $36 million, four-year deal with Miller.

“The Miller acquisition with the draft pick was the best route we think and I think of moving forward, regardless of how great Robertson has been as a setup man and a closer this past year,” Cashman said. “It might not be the popular decision but I think it’s the best one.”

When the Yankees announced Miller’s agreement Friday, Cashman didn’t rule out keeping Robertson.

“I wanted him to maximize his free-agent value, to be honest, not that he needs any help from me,” Cashman said, “but I felt it was in his interest to get out the Yankees still (being) in it.”

Cashman met Monday with Robertson’s agent, Scott Leventhal.

“Is there a Yankee price you want me to consider?” Cashman recalled asking. “And he just said, ‘If you’re interested, make me an offer.'”

“They never made me an offer,” Cashman added. “I never made them one.”

Robertson, a right-hander who turns 30, had spent his seven-year big league career with the Yankees. He took over from Mariano Rivera as New York’s closer last season and saved 39 games in 44 chances.

“We’re going to miss him,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi told WFAN radio on Tuesday. “There’s no doubt about that.”

New York’s remaining bullpen options include Miller, Dellin Betances, Shawn Kelley, Adam Warren and Justin Wilson. None has been a regular closer.

“We feel that we have a number of quality arms down there that can step up in the bullpen,” Girardi told WFAN. “There’s a lot of good arms.”

“I think guys like to know their roles,” he added when asked if the Yankees could play part of the season without naming a closer. “But maybe it’s not ironed out when we leave spring training. Maybe it takes a little bit of time, and maybe we have to sit down and tell (them), ‘This is how we’re gonna do it, so just be prepared.’ ”

Robertson’s exit follows Robinson Cano’s departure last offseason for Seattle, which gave him a $240 million, 10-year deal. With the retirements of Rivera after the 2013 season and Derek Jeter this year, outfielder Brett Gardner becomes the Yankees’ senior homegrown player.

“I would think the fan base is connected to the pinstripes and hopefully the winning teams that we always intend to put on the field,” Cashman said.

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