Results tagged ‘ Matt Thornton ’

Matt Thornton says Yankees were at the top of his list

This morning, Yankees left-hander Matt Thornton discussed his decision to sign with the Yankees. Thornton signed a two-year, $7 million deal with the club over the winter after spending time last year with both the White Sox and the Red Sox. He’ll be sliding into the role of left-handed specialist last filled by Boone Logan, who signed with the Rockies.

On why he signed with the Yankees: “A few things. One, the moves they’d already made, and two, the players they already had here. You know they’re going to be a good team. They have some good opportunities for some of the young guys out there in the bullpen, and then just continued to make moves all offseason. When you have a team of this quality, being a championship contender was probably one of my top two reasons to figure out where I wanted to sign, the other one being my family.”

On the importance of the second guaranteed year: “Absolutely. That came into play. There were some other things that came into play. They were aggressive in the two years and made it clear that they wanted me to be here.”

On his injuries from last year: “I feel really good. I’m starting to feel good at the right time; a lot of work in the offseason. I go to my place in Tempe, Arizona, Fischer Sports & Therapy, and do my physical therapy there, my workouts there. I feel like I’ve got everything ironed out. Other things will probably pop up over the year and that’s just the nature of the beast.”

On how long the oblique injury bothered him: “Until about late November. I felt it. I tried to come back in three weeks and pitch and make myself on the playoff roster, but that didn’t work out either. It kind of completely went away, I’d say mid to late November.”

On being left off Boston’s playoff & World Series rosters: “Disappointing. You work your whole career to be a part of something like that. I understood, I was inconsistent at the time and they felt the other guys were doing a better job. They were nothing but respectful to me in the process. It was a great organization and a good team to play for, but at the same time, probably one of the most disappointing points of my sports career.”

On why he picked the Yankees over other opportunities: “For me personally, they were one of the top teams on my radar. I told my agent, the Yankees are right up there. The teams I gave him were all teams that I expected are going to compete this year, and teams that expect themselves to finish at the end with a win. It was just a process that other teams were kind of dragging their feet on the relief market; ‘Oh, yeah, we want to talk,’ and all that stuff. The Yankees came out and [said], ‘Hey, we want him. Here we go.’ I’m not one of those guys that’s going to sit there and start bouncing around and find as much money or years as possible. I have security and stability and a ball club like this, a first-class organization with the division and the roster the Yankees have, I’m going to jump on that real quick.”

On a Yankees bullpen without Mariano Rivera: “I’m excited for David [Robertson] to have the opportunity and see what he does. I’ve watched David five, six years now and he’s one of the best relievers in the game. I have no doubt he’ll transition into that role just fine. Following up in Mariano’s footsteps is not the easiest thing and you guys won’t make it any easier on him, but you know, Mo, he’s the best ever. He’s the best in the playoffs ever, he’s the best in the regular season, he’s the best there is. He’ll be missed, obviously. He’ll be missed in baseball, not just by the Yankees. But we have to focus on moving up, and guys stepping up and stepping into roles and doing the job.”

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