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Worst contract in baseball?

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#1 Shane Wahl

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 10:46 AM

So much blathering about Joe Mauer, but . . . I forgot how ridiculous Ryan Zimmerman's contract is. After getting paid $12 million this year, he gets $14 million per for the next six years and then $18 million at age 34 before the team option in 2020. Good lord. His OPS decline .101 from 2010-2011 and ANOTHER .130 drop this year. He is at .668 right now.

#2 glunn

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Posted 03 July 2012 - 10:54 PM

So much blathering about Joe Mauer, but . . . I forgot how ridiculous Ryan Zimmerman's contract is.

After getting paid $12 million this year, he gets $14 million per for the next six years and then $18 million at age 34 before the team option in 2020. Good lord. His OPS decline .101 from 2010-2011 and ANOTHER .130 drop this year. He is at .668 right now.


It looks like he is doing better recently -- "hits in seven of his last eight games with three homers, four doubles and 13 RBI" (per CBS Sportsline) But you make a good point about this potentially being a much worse contract than Mauer's. The same might be said about Pujols and the Angels.

#3 YourHouseIsMyHouse

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 12:20 AM

I don't care about Mauer's contract anymore. Nick Blackburn has the worst contract as of now.

#4 biggentleben

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 07:21 AM

Ryan Howard says "What bad contract?"
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#5 benhertz

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 07:41 AM

Barry Zito

2012: $19M
2013: $20M
2014: $18M team option, $7M buyout. Option vests with 200IP in 2013 or 400 IP in 2012-2013 or 600IP in 2011-13. If 2014 option vests, Zito may opt out and receive $3.5M buyout.

#6 benhertz

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 07:47 AM

Vernon Wells
2012: $21M
2013: $21M
2014: $21M

Adam Dunn
2012: $14M
2013: $15M
2014: $15M

#7 Seth Stohs

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 07:59 AM

See any $100 million contract other than CC Sabathia (although the odds of that turning out well for the length of the contract is not good).

#8 Shane Wahl

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 08:21 AM

Those mentioned other than Dunn are bad, but they are close to done. I would have to look at the other $100 million contracts to judge that, Seth. Prince Fielder is probably going to be excellent for 5 years yet, and good for another 3 after that . . . Zimmerman's combines declining performance with 7 more years after this one!

#9 DPJ

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 09:30 AM

In time it will be Prince or Pujols, but my money is still on Arod.

#10 biggentleben

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 10:01 AM

See any $100 million contract other than CC Sabathia (although the odds of that turning out well for the length of the contract is not good).


Not every one. ARod earned his contract back in Texas. Not so much in New York, though. But we expect value until the end of a deal when, in fact, the peak value during a $100M contract could provide enough value to warrant the contract.
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#11 biggentleben

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 11:12 AM

Little research on this:

Player/contract dates/contract value/value provided:
Alex Rodriguez/2008-2017/275M/2008-2012 value: $88.2M
Alex Rodriguez/2001-2010/252M/2002-2010 value: $222.8M (7.8 WAR pre-2002, approximate value $23M)
Albert Pujols/2012-2021/240M/2012 value: $5.9M
Joey Votto/2014-2023/225M
Prince Fielder/2012-2020/214M/2012 value: $6.3M
Derek Jeter/2001-2010/189M/2002-2010 value: 157.9M (4.3 WAR pre-2002, approximate value 11.5M)
Joe Mauer/2011-2018/184M/2011-2012 value: $19.8M
Mark Teixeira/2009-2016/180M/2009-2012 value: $61.7M
CC Sabathia/2009-2015/161M/2009-2012 value: $94.3M
Manny Ramirez/2001-2008/160M/2002-2008 value: $97.5M (5.2 WAR pre-2002, approximate value 13.5M)
Troy Tulowitzki/2011-2020/157.75M/2011-2012 value: $35.5M
Adrian Gonzalez/2012-2018/154M/2012 value: $2.9M
Miguel Cabrera/2008-2015/152.3M/2008-2012 value: $106.9M
Todd Helton/2001-2011/151.5M/2002-2011 value: $132.1M (7.6 WAR pre-2002, approximate value $24M)
Carl Crawford/2011-2017/142M/2011-2012 value: $0.9M
Johan Santana/2008-2013/137.5M/2008-2012 value: $55.3M
Alfonso Soriano/2007-2014/136M/2007-2012 value: $75.1M
Vernon Wells/2008-2014/126M/2008-2012 value: $23.1M
Barry Zito/2007-2013/126M/2007-2012 value: $27.9M
Jayson Werth/2011-2017/126M/2011-2012 value: $14M
Ryan Howard/2013-2017/125M
Mike Hampton/2001-2008/121M/2002-2008 value: $23.8M (2.9 WAR pre-2002, approximate value $8M)
Cliff Lee/2011-2016/120M/2011-2012 value: $40.2M
Jason Giambi/2002-2008/120M/2002-2008 value: $69.2M
Matt Holliday/2010-2016/120M/2010-2012 value: $63.5M
Carlos Beltran/2005-2011/119M/2005-2011 value: $133M
Ken Griffey, Jr./2000-2008/116.5M/2002-2008 value: $11.8M (7.7 WAR pre-2002, approximate value $22M)
Jose Reyes/2012-2017/106M/2012 value: $6.9M
Kevin Brown/1999-2005/105M/2002-2005 value: $31.1M (25.1 WAR pre-2002, approximate value $72M)
Carlos Lee/2007-2012/100M/2007-2012 value: $46.7M
Albert Pujols/2004-2010/100M/2004-2010 value: $230.8M

Nobody mentioned Griffey, but his is very bad as well.
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#12 Shane Wahl

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 11:36 AM

Thanks for that. I was mainly looking forward, but that Griffey contract was horrendous. Carl Crawford better get it together!

#13 biggentleben

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 05:00 PM

Mike Hampton's is currently the worst ever, achieving only 26.3% of his paid value. However, both Zito and Wells are well below that. Zito needs about 2 WAR between now and the end of 2013 in order to avoid being the worst ever.
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#14 spideyo

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Posted 04 July 2012 - 11:29 PM

For all the bad things you can say about Mauer's contract, at least when his contract runs out we're going to stop paying him. Thanks to the wonders of Deferred Payment, which I don't believe the Twins have ever used, guys like Bobby Bonilla will be making millions decades after their craptastic contracts technically run out.

#15 Shane Wahl

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Posted 05 July 2012 - 12:55 AM

For all the bad things you can say about Mauer's contract, at least when his contract runs out we're going to stop paying him. Thanks to the wonders of Deferred Payment, which I don't believe the Twins have ever used, guys like Bobby Bonilla will be making millions decades after their craptastic contracts technically run out.


Haha. Bobby Bo = brilliant

somehow. Deferred weirdness

#16 PseudoSABR

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Posted 05 July 2012 - 01:34 AM

Mike Hampton's is currently the worst ever, achieving only 26.3% of his paid value. However, both Zito and Wells are well below that. Zito needs about 2 WAR between now and the end of 2013 in order to avoid being the worst ever.

Kevin Brown's contract was pretty gawdawful too, IIRC.

#17 Cap'n Piranha

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Posted 05 July 2012 - 06:58 AM

I have to go with Prince Fielder, for the simple reason that after next year, he will be earning $24m through 2020. That means the Tigers will have to pay him that much until he's 36, and given his declines this year in homers, slugging %, and OBP, I don't think he's worth that. What makes it worse is that the Tigers will have to pay Verlander after 2014, and Cabrera after 2015, and given that both of those players are a step above Fielder, it's not ridiculous to think that the Tigers will have to commit 27 to 28m per year for both of them. That means that from 2016-2020 (5 years!), the Tigers will be paying 75-80 MILLION dollars for 3 players. It's also right around that time that guys like Scherzer, Porcello, Jackson and Avila will start hitting their free agency years, and it's not ridiculous to think those 4 guys will command at least 50m combined per year too. That means in 2016, if the Tigers keep those 7 players, they will have equalled this year's payroll on only 7 guys. I'm not that familiar with the Tiger's minor league system, but they're going to need a lot of talent to avoid being one injury away from terrible.

#18 jlovren

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Posted 05 July 2012 - 06:58 AM

Nishioka? haha....

#19 biggentleben

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Posted 05 July 2012 - 09:14 AM

Kevin Brown's contract was pretty gawdawful too, IIRC.


That's just it. It wasn't. So many people want high production through the entire deal that they remember Brown putting up seasons that were worth $1M at the end, but he actually produced just about equal value to his overall number mostly from his first 4 years of the contract. Basically, if CC's injury was significant enough that he coasted the rest of his contract as a 1-2 WAR pitcher, he'd have the same image, but he's earned $90M on a $160M deal in the first three years of the deal.
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#20 biggentleben

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Posted 05 July 2012 - 09:15 AM

[quote name='Cap'n Piranha;31243]I have to go with Prince Fielder' date=' for the simple reason that after next year, he will be earning $24m through 2020. That means the Tigers will have to pay him that much until he's 36, and given his declines this year in homers, slugging %, and OBP, I don't think he's worth that. What makes it worse is that the Tigers will have to pay Verlander after 2014, and Cabrera after 2015, and given that both of those players are a step above Fielder, it's not ridiculous to think that the Tigers will have to commit 27 to 28m per year for both of them. That means that from 2016-2020 (5 years!), the Tigers will be paying 75-80 MILLION dollars for 3 players. It's also right around that time that guys like Scherzer, Porcello, Jackson and Avila will start hitting their free agency years, and it's not ridiculous to think those 4 guys will command at least 50m combined per year too. That means in 2016, if the Tigers keep those 7 players, they will have equalled this year's payroll on only 7 guys. I'm not that familiar with the Tiger's minor league system, but they're going to need a lot of talent to avoid being one injury away from terrible.[/QUOTE']

The Tigers are basically using the Phillies model. We're seeing this year how that looks when it hits the end, but what we don't know is how long it will take for that team to bottom out, rebuild, and recover with the long-term deals it has hanging over it.
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#21 mike wants wins

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Posted 05 July 2012 - 09:27 AM

and the issue isn't which contract is bad, but will these contracts continue to be offered by other teams, meaning the Twins will almost always opt NOT to sign big time free agents "because these contracts never work out". Well, true, it is unlikely a 13 year deal will work all 13 years. The question you have to ask yourself is, am I willing to roll the dice that the contract will be good more often than it will be bad? So far, the Twins have been unwilling to do that, and that's one reason they suck for two years in a row (though the main reason is bad drafting and bad trading).
Lighten up Francis....