I never thought about this possibility when discussing the opt-out clauses in the deal. Luckily, there are other bloggers out there smarter than me. Observe:
"Because the contract is end-loaded, it isn’t likely that Soriano’s future performance would ever surpass his salary, so if the right hander were to allow his ego to send him back into the free agent market, the Yankees would be freed of the risk associated with the length of the deal. In other words, the Yankees would wind up with one great year from Soriano and Type-A free agent compensation, which means they’d swap one draft pick for two. Should that happen, the Yankees’ end of the bargain would look much better, which is exactly why the opt outs are probably more in their best interest than Soriano’s (i.e., it provides him with a temptation that isn’t likely to work toward his benefit)." (via The Captain's Blog)
Touche, William. Touche. That scenario playing out would be a win-win-WIN for the Yankees in that they would get maximum performance from a guy with closer talent (presumably in helping them go deep into the postseason), wouldn't have to suffer through the full $35 million, and would get compensatory picks if and when Soriano goes back into the FA pond that will help ease the suffering of all the draft pick lovers out there who are undoubtedly still crying in their soup as I sit here and write this.
Alright, I'm fully on board with this deal now. Let's get this motherfucker fitted for a cap and jersey and get him out there now. Just say a few "Hail Marys" for his elbow health and then run him out there in 2011 until his arm falls off!
Mr. October is watching
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