With Masahiro Tanaka signed and having taken the Yankees’ outlay to retain and sign free agents beyond a half a billion dollars, Hal Steinbrenner declared his baseball operation staff must “be creative” in finalizing the roster.

The one glaring need that remains is finding a reliever who can either close if David Robertson cannot handle being Mariano Rivera’s successor or pitch the eighth inning to replace Robertson. In discussing that matter, Steinbrenner did what others in his organization have so far avoided this offseason – the owner declared David Robertson the closer.

“We are going to continue to look, but no doubt we have already spent a lot of money this offseason,” Steinbrenner said. “I have a lot of confidence in Robertson and so does Joe [Girardi]. Robertson is going to be our closer, and I believe he will do a good job. We have done a lot to improve our team and we just have to understand that you cannot be perfect everywhere.”