A $15 million base seems way too high to me, so does $12 million. I’d say $8 million with playing time incentives that can push it $15 million seems a better fit. What do our Yankees fans think?
Therein lies the potential gulf, according to one team official, who says, “there’s just no way” Rivera can expect to pull down another guaranteed $15 million. With all due respect to their resident superstar, the Yankees will need some assurance that Rivera is still durable and, if not bullet-proof, at least close enough while they groom another closer for 2014.
So it’ll be up to Cashman to craft a face-saving offer, yet one that wouldn’t reward Rivera for spending most of the 2012 season on the disabled list. Will it be $12 million plus incentives? If it’s less, how much less? At what point does Rivera use his equity with the public – that limitless reservoir of popularity – to get what he wants?
Remember, even though Rivera will finish out his playing days in the Bronx – 2013 likely will be his last season – he has more leverage than Derek Jeter in 2010. The captain shocked the Bombers by initially asking for a six-year, $150 million deal when there was no market for his services, and eventually had to be talked into – or, more accurately, talked down to – an annual average salary of $17 million.