Three of the New York Yankees most integral parts may be on the move this offseason. Nick Swisher, Hiroki Kuroda and Rafael Soriano all rejected the Yankees $13.3 million qualifying offers. Thus they may now pursue their careers with other teams. The caveat in all this is the team that signs anyone of these players would have to give up compensatory draft pick
“I’m not surprised whatsoever,” general manager Brian Cashman said. “I expected it.”
Under the rules of the collective bargaining agreement, the Yankees can continue to negotiate with all three of their former players. Should Swisher, Soriano and/or Kuroda sign with another major-league team, the Yankees will receive a compensatory draft pick. Swisher and Soriano are expected to pursue multi-year offers, while Kuroda could still return to the Yankees on a one-year pact.
“I’m excited about the opportunities we have,” Cashman said. “I like the fact that we can continue dialogue with everybody that we would like to and still be in a position to gain draft picks as a worst-case scenario which would benefit our farm system as we move forward.”
Many Yankee fans are down on Nick Swisher, but Kuroda and Soriano would be huge losses for the Yankees’ pitching staff. With Mariano Rivera coming back for another year, it appears the Yankees’ closer role will be filled by the legendary all-time saves leader. However, Soriano could be a valuable set-up man and fill the role of closer after Rivera retires. As for Kuroda, he was a pleasant surprise for the Yankees this past year as he exceeded expectations.
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