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Twins starting catcher Jason Castro went on the DL May 5th with pain in his right knee. Initially, it was reported that Castro underwent...

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Article: MIL 5, MIN 4: Jake Cave Homers in MLB Debut

Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 12:51 PM
With every new injury comes an opportunity for another player to emerge. Joe Mauer was placed on the DL, opening the door for outfielder...

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A foreseeable event

Posted by sthpstm , 26 January 2018 · 409 views

As a fan whose lifestyle is most kindly described as thrifty, the pay calculations of baseball players has long bothered me. Why would a player who is young but exceptionally gifted be payed a pittance? Why would a player who was once productive but has for various reasons become unproductive be paid 10 to 20 times more? Why would a player who is productive and may remain so or may as likely become unproductive be guaranteed 200 times more?
"Because the market and it's rules allow it" has essentially been the response. If it take s $50 million, or $100 million to get an experienced player who has been greatly underpaid; if a team is willing to pay them and get a small percentage of the expected value for the monetary investment, so be it.
We are finally seeing the beginning of this system cracking. While I welcome the change, I don't welcome the fights likely to ensue. Can a team shield itself from this?
This offseason, with a few exceptions teams are beginning to step back from what have historically been vast overpays for currently good but soon likely to decline productivity. This makes sense. But at the same time those same teams will continue to pay next to nothing for some players that will provide value far greater than their pay. This does not make sense. A market correction is understandable; but a correction on one part without a correction on the other will result in some issue. In this case, that issue may be a player strike. Perhaps it will start small until the next CBA, or perhaps or it will happen all at once in 4 years.
Rather than going any further on the complaints, how can a team get ahead of the issue, and is there any advantage to doing so?
What if a team chooses to provide fairer pay to young players by internally increasing all pre-arbitration salaries to amounts rarely seen? If the Twins contract offer to free agents included this guarantee, would any veteran player care?
Will that increase improve player moral, and will that have an effect on effort, on productive, on things that make a ball club better?
Teams created analytics and research departments to improve their outcomes. Is there a market deficiency here that could be altered to be ahead of the curve? Would a team doing so be more attractive to free agents? Would fans care? Would they react positively and support the team in greater ways (more dollars)?
I believe this is likely something that might effect the teams appearance to free agents greater in 2019 and 2020 more so than in 2018, but since 2018 is what currently affects it, here is my example.

Dear Yu Darvish (or Jake Arrieta, Alex Cobb, or whomever you wish with dollars and possibly years changed appropriately),
Effective 2018, the Twins will be increasing the salaries for pre-arbitration eligible players 2 times the standard rate calculation. This amount will increase to 3 times the standard rate in 2019, to 4 times the standard rate in 2020 and to 5 times the rate in 2021.
Further increases will be likely in 2022.
Beginning in 2019 and ending in 2021, arbitration-eligible numbers will also be increased with the final percentages being an increase of 100% - 90% for players under $1 million, by 75%-60% for players over $1 million but under $3 million, by 50%-35% for those between $3 million and $5 million, and by 25%-15% for those between $5 million and $10 million. The percentages will be based on a sliding scale which decreases for greater salaries which is detailed on the attached.
In order to pay all players a fairer wage, veteran players in free agency will, must, see their wages affected to some degree. Our offer is reflective of this change, though we have attempted to keep those changes minimal and have included incentives based off of the amount of innings pitched in later years.
Beginning in 2018 your 5 year salary schedule would be the following: $28 million, $30 million, $25 million (up to $3 million incentives at 190 innings), $20 million (up to $5 million incentives at 190 innings), $17 million (up to $7 million incentives at 190 innings). The base salary total is $120 million up to $135 million with incentives met. We acknowledge that based off of past contracts for free agents, the amount would likely have been $180 - $150 million over 6 or 5 years. But we also acknowledge that a change must come and will come. We want to be a driver in that change and ask you to join us in being a driving force for fairer pay practices.
By the year 2021 players base salary with the Twins will begin at $2.5 million, with an estimated total salary increase of $20 million.
By the year 2021 arbitration salaries as compared with 2018 salaries would be $22 million to $14 million (based off of current Twins players likely to be in the system we estimate this actual amount to be $65 million compared to $50 million).
The total increase for the year 2021 which must be reflected in free agent payments is $32.5 million, with total increases over the 4 year period being far greater.

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