The multi-team bidding war has finally come to a close, and Andrew Miller is officially headed to New York to join the Yankees, according to Jack Curry of the YES Network. According to Curry, the deal is worth $36 million over four years.
Miller, a first-time free agent, will now be the highest paid non-closing relief pitcher in MLB history. The previous record for annual salary for a relief pitcher belonged to Jeremy Affeldt, who signed a deal with San Francisco prior to the 2013 season worth $6 million a year. Early in the negotiation process, the Yankees appeared to be apprehensive about giving Miller four years, but the Yankees decided to give him a four-year contract at a lower annual salary. The Yankees recently lost 2014 closer David Robertson to free agency, and Robertson has reportedly been seeking a contract similar to Jonathan Papelbon's, which is worth $50 million over four years.
Along with the Yankees, the Astros and Dodgers were also among the finalists, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports. The Red Sox were considered a serious contender at one point, but Heyman notes that they preferred to focus on starting pitching. The Astros could be turning their focus to a proven closer, like Robertson or Sergio Romo, according to Evan Drellich of the Houston Chronicle, and are serious about adding relief help after offering Miller a four-year, $40 million deal before he decided on the Yankees.
For the 2014 season, Miller posted a 2.02 ERA over 73 appearances for the Red Sox and the Orioles. Miller's 14.87 K/9 rate was second only to Aroldis Chapman of the Reds. For his career, Miller has a 3.38 ERA as a reliever, stretched out over nine seasons, with four different teams.