David Robertson, White Sox agree to 4-year, $40 million contract, per report
The White Sox bolstered their bullpen in a big way at the Winter Meetings with the addition of the best closer on the market.
The move should help solidify the Chicago bullpen, a major area of weakness last season. Chicago relievers combined to blow 21 saves, while ranking near the bottom of the league in a number of major categories. Jake Petricka, Ronald Belisario and others spent time finishing games, but that role now slides to Robertson who is coming off a great season in New York.
Robertson spent the first seven years of his career with the Yankees and took over for Mariano Rivera as the club’s closer in 2014. The right-hander finished with 39 saves in 44 opportunities, striking out 96 batters and walking only 23, while posting a 3.08 ERA in 64⅓ innings. For the third straight year, Robertson finished with over four times as many strikeouts as walks.
Relievers are often hard to depend on from year-to-year, but Robertson has been as steady as any in the game since arriving in the Bronx. The 29-year-old veteran has thrown over 60 innings per season for five straight years, making at least 60 appearances out of the Yankee bullpen in every season during that time span. Dating back to 2011, Robertson has posted a 2.20 ERA and 2.40 FIP in over 250 innings pitched.
Robertson turned down a qualifying offer earlier this offseason from the Yankees, which means the White Sox forfeit their second-round pick in 2015 for signing Robertson. The White Sox’s first-round pick is protected as a top-10 selection.
In 2014, his final year of team control with the Yankees, Robertson earned $5.2 million.