We probably agree more than we admit/realize.
But don't you think the terms of the Ellsbury deal stands out particularly as a Bronx-Bomber shot across the Red Sox bow and really just rubbing it in their face?.
I think this has a long way to go before it can be considered the worst contract ever. I'm glad the Twins didn't jump into this though.
1. ARod - the Yankees bid against themselves
2. Howard - They extended for 138M 2-3 seasons before his contract ended and he was broken before the new contract even started.
4. Fielder/Pujols/Votto - 3 ridiculously long extensions to 1Bman
5. Hamilton - this looked a little questionable at the time but he has been exceptionally awful.
6. Tex - 3 more years left as he enters the death spiral part of his career
7. CCrawford - basically the equal of Ellsbury's
9. Verlander - He showed signs of slowing last year and Leyland has run up some pretty high pitch counts on his arm.
10. Wells extension from the Blue Jays. They paid elite player prices ridiculously backloaded for a good player that barely deserved to be on a baseball field for half of the contract.
An interesting argument could be made for/against any of these being better/worse than Ellsbury's deal. And there are probably 5-10 more that could be added to these.
Amazing how people can see into the future. Time will tell if it's a bad contract, the Yankees have the money and are trying to make their team better.
The Twins have lots of money still about 30-35 mill below the stated 52% Jim Pohlad said they'd spend to put a competitive team on the field.
I'd much rather have my team try and maybe end up with a bad contract instead of sitting back afraid of making a mistake while keeping the money in the owners pocket.
Pujols has shown decline for 3 straight years (with 8 years left). http://www.fangraphs.com/fantasy/alb...swift-descent/
Votto's new contract hasn't even started yet. He has 10 more years left.
In short, he's not a guy you want to give a seven year contract. Sure, he might be Rickey Henderson... But we've seen exactly one Rickey Henderson since 1920. Odds are against the guy thriving through his late 30s.
It's not about seeing the future, it's playing the odds and using player models to your advantage to minimize risk. And all things point to Jacoby Ellsbury declining quite rapidly. Hell, he hasn't been a great player since 2011 (and it should also be noted that was the only season he was a great player).
Ignore what appears to be a flukish 2011 and Ellsbury is basically Michael Bourn at three times the price. I'm not sure how anyone would consider that a good deal.
Pujols had foot surgery, oblique issues, and shoulder issues. He tried to play through them. He had the surgery. I don't think he's done. I think he can hit til he's 37/38 at .300 30 100 level. I can be wrong of course. I just don't see his skills diminishing that much when healthy. He's too disciplined/hard worker to not.
I would agree with the rest of your list though.
Maybe Verlander, like Clemens sans the steroids, will have a 2nd wing after 30 to his career.
What Brock said. I was surprised at how old he is. Guys who get this kind of money typically make it big by their 25th birthday. His first above-average year was at age 27. And he's only had two above average years in his career. Here is his OPS+ for his career:
2007/23: 131 (127 PAs)
2008/24: 88 (609 PAs)
2009/25: 98 (624 PAs)
2010/26: 30 (84 PAs in injury year)
2011/27: 146 (732 PAs)
2012/28: 84 (323 PAs in injury-shortened year)
2013/29: 114 (636 PAs)
That does not say elite player on the upswing in his career, which is the contract he got. That says above-average player in decline. And if you focus on defense, which at times has been elite, you can expect significant decline by the end of the contract. Center fielders with limited power do not fare well into their 30s because they have no place to go when their range declines. Guys like Hunter have the bat to take them to a corner. Ellsbury? Not so much.
Upshot: This is one of the riskiest free agent contracts in the game. There is almost no chance the Yankees will get anywhere near the value they are investing in this player.
This is a bad contract. I don't think it looks worse than Pujols contract does right now.
Of course, no one expected that the Pujols contract would look this bad two years after the fact. Pretty much everyone expects this contract to look bad two years from now.
I'm just glad the Yankees are adept at signing 30+ something year olds to megadeals.
It helps keep things honest for the rest of the league. Imagine if they were actually good at developing talent and had discretionary and fiscal responsibility in their cap moves...
Mark Teixeira, $24.6 for 3 more years
CC Sabathia, $23M for 4 more years
Alex Rodriguez, $26M for 4 more years
Vernon Wells, $23M
Now McCann at $17M per and Ellsbury at $22M per.
Didn't Derek Jeter get another $10-12M extension?
Any time they can get stuck/locked into big contracts for long periods of time is great. Provides little flexibility if injuries/etc.
The Jayson Werth contract and the Vernon Wells contract were worse and perhaps the Matt Kemp contract. Of the top 10 OF contracts for money 6 of the players were traded and the Reds tried to trade Griffey.
Its not a bad contract , Just like with A-RIOD the Yankees will have the commish discover he did some thing wrong and will hand him a 211 game suspention thus voiding the last 2 years of his contract
I will not argue that he aged very well, even having a very good full season his last year, which surprises me that he didn't attempt to keep on toward goals like 2500 hits or 650 steals, but he was simply done.
Juan Pierre is another guy who's aged well, but also well traveled.
My comparison isn't so much that Lofton was a poor player as he aged, but that he was easily available to teams. Heck, Juan Pierre has been found for a song in recent years and put up lines like .307/.351 with 37 steals in 2012 in only 439 PA. Guys like that aren't in the uber-elite of the pay threshold, and shouldn't require 20M+ over long-term to acquire.