GM Mike Rizzo on the Washington Nationals' New Closer Rafael Soriano

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GM Mike Rizzo on the Washington Nationals' New Closer Rafael Soriano
Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

Davey Johnson was on an African safari when the Washington Nationals announced that they'd signed 33-year-old free agent closer Rafael Soriano last week. In discussing the role Soriano would play in the 2013 Nats' bullpen, D.C. GM Mike Rizzo was upfront with reporters during the pitcher's introductory press conference. "Whenever you're talking about signing a free agent with the resume of Rafael," Rizzo said, "I think that you're speaking to the player, you're paying the player and the expectations for the player is that [he's] going to finish out games." Soriano's agent, Scott Boras, had just finished explaining that the right-hander's decision to opt out of the final year of the 3-year/$35M dollar deal he signed with New York in January of 2011, had a lot to do with their belief that Soriano would not be able to close with the Yankees when Mariano Rivera returned to the mound.

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