For the first time in nearly two decades, the New York Yankees need a closer.
No longer will Mariano Rivera walk through the outfield fence as #42 decided to hang up the cleats after the 2013 season, leaving quite a hole atop the Yankees bullpen.
Hoping to patch it (as much as possible), the Yankees have been hitting the phones and free agent market looking for a ‘fireman’ and according to the Newark Star-Ledger, have contacted Joe Nathan, formerly of the Texas Rangers and Grant Balfour of the Oakland Athletics:
General manager Brian Cashman refuses to anoint David Robertson his closer. The team has had contact with Oakland free agent Grant Balfour and Texas free agent Joe Nathan about that role.
Nathan reportedly wanted too many years and too much cash for the Rangers to bring him back, so its unknown if the Yankees would match his demands which are relatively excessive for a closer nearing 40 years of age.
As for Balfour, he’s likely to come at a reduced rate in comparison to Nathan – though not by much as both are considered to be among the elite free agent closers.