Mariano Rivera wants a two-year deal

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The Yankees are busy with Derek Jeter and Cliff Lee, but after that’s all said and done, Mariano Rivera will be tops on their priority list.  Jon Heyman reports today that, when they do get to him, they’ll find that he wants a two-year deal, not a one-year deal.

This should not be a problem. I think you pretty much give Mariano Rivera whatever he wants. At least within reason.  He earned 2011 by continuing to be awesome in 2010.  While, sure, he might fall off a cliff eventually, who has a greater right to ask for an extra year than Mariano Rivera?  He’s carried them for 15 years. They can carry him for one if, for some reason, next season is his last effective one.

In other news, Heyman says that “Rivera has told friends” of his desire for two-years.  I’m trying to picture what Mariano Rivera’s “friends” are like.  I can see anything from normal guys, to cyborgs, to supermodels to the nerdiest people who ever existed.  Could be anyone, really. Unless I’m missing a big expose that’s been written, we probably know less about Mariano Rivera than we know about any all-time elite athlete in history.

Personally, I’m going with cyborgs.

Shohei Ohtani no longer facing Masahiro Tanaka on Sunday at Yankee Stadium

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Shohei Ohtani has essentially become the Angels’ designated Sunday starting pitcher, but Angels manager Mike Scioscia announced Thursday morning that the 23-year-old two-way Japanese star will be skipped in the rotation this weekend at Yankee Stadium for “workload management” purposes.

Ohtani is fine to continue hitting, so there’s no sense of any physical ailment.

This decision will rob us — and the Japanese media — of a showdown between Ohtani and countrymate Masahiro Tanaka. And for that we are rather devastated, but you can understand the Angels’ concerns about overuse.

Ohtani has registered a 3.35 ERA, 1.066 WHIP, and 52/14 K/BB ratio through his first 40 1/3 innings (seven starts) as a major league pitcher and he’s slashing .308/.364/.582 with six home runs and 19 RBI in 26 games as a part-time DH.