New York Yankees Sign Rafael Soriano: How It Makes Bombers Bullpen Dominant

Frank FittipaldiCorrespondent IIJanuary 14, 2011

ARLINGTON, TX - OCTOBER 9:  Rafael Soriano #29 of the Tampa Bay Rays throws a pitch against the Texas Rangers during game three of the ALDS at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on October 9, 2010 in Arlington, Texas.  The Rays won 6-3.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

Jon Heyman of has reported that free agent closer Rafael Soriano has agreed to a 3-year, $35 million deal with the New York Yankees.

The Yankees may have overpaid Soriano, but this is a great move for the Yanks who should have no problem closing out games in the 2011 season.

The signing of Soriano will give the Yankees by far, the best one-two bullpen punch in the league.

Soriano saved an American League leading 45 games out of 48 tries. Soriano also posted a fantastic 1.73 ERA with a 0.80 WHIP. Pair those numbers with the greatest closer of all-time in Mariano Rivera and you have yourself quite a bullpen.

Soriano will serve as the setup man to Rivera for the next two seasons and than will likely take over as the closer if Rivera decides to retire after his 2-year, $30 million contract is up.

Rivera had 33 saves while posting a 1.80 ERA and a 0.83 WHIP in 2010 so having Soriano behind him will make the back of the Yankees' bullpen dominant.

The Yankees have been searching for an eighth inning man since Joba Chamberlain has not been able to get it done.

Kerry Wood was brought in last season and did a great job but he has moved on to the Chicago Cubs.

The Yankees recently made a move that brought in lefty Pedro Feliciano. The Yankees now have two effective left-handed pitchers in Feliciano and Boone Logan, who posted a 2.93 ERA last season.

Opposing teams in the American League are going to be facing a difficult task in the later innings of games in 2011.