How Much Is It Worth To Twins To Avoid Multi-Year Contracts?
Jon Heymannotes the Angels are looking to trade Dan Haren and/or Ervin Santana.
Both have option years for 2013, and if their options are picked up both are fairly pricey: Haren's is for $15.5 million and Santana $13 million. Neither had fantastic years (Santana in particular, who also experienced a drop in velocity), but both have a track record of success and both are still fairly young.
If they can't trade them, everyone expects the Angels to buy both of them out (a combined cost of a little over $4 million).
So why would anyone give the Angels anything for these guys they don't want?
Because a team could offer a bag of buttons to the Angels (saving them a little cash in the process for their Greinke offer), instead of signing a pitcher in FA long term in 2012/13 and having to pay him 3 or 4 years from now. TThey'd pay steep for 2013 but then be done (if they so chose).
Almost every year, dating back to his run as GM in the early 2000s, Terry Rya has maintained that the Twins don't necessarily have an issue with the salary of free agent pitchers. Their issue is they aren't comfortable (probably justified) with the commitment in years, which of course not only add cost, but also, given pitchers can go off a cliff at the drop of a hat due to injury, a lot of risk.
Now, I have no idea what their opinion might be on Haren or Santana, but here's an opportunity, at least, to add a relatively "name" pitcher to fill in one of 4 open rotation spots, literally without any longterm commitment after next year. The Angels aren't in position to ask for anything serious in a trade, either.
The alternative for these two is things unfold as most expect and they're bought out and become free agents. But I'm fairly confident Haren would get paid on a multi-year contract. Santana? Not as sure. But a top-of-the-head comp might be Edwin Jackson (similar age, pedigree last year), who signed 1 year, $11 million. Fairly close to Santana's option.