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Reusse: Modern Game Unkind to Dozier, Plouffe

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#41 Jack Goin

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Posted 23 February 2021 - 10:17 AM

Reusse's point is a big reason Dozier was not given any type of option for 2019. The buyout and/or the money for '19 would have been too big for what he would have been projected to produce. Typically in a long-term deal like that you would have seen a club option for a 5th year "just in case". But

Dozier entered '19 as a 32 year old with a skill set that was already in the declining phase of the aging pattern for hitters.

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#42 Dodecahedron

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Posted 23 February 2021 - 10:36 AM

Some of you may be too young to remember the Senior League. It was a short-lived league of older players. Though attendance was low, they had a TV deal and we were all able to catch some games if we wanted to watch.

 

The games were better than you would expect and some players, both hitters and pitchers, put up astronomical stats. At the beginning, the rule was that players had to be 35 or older, but this rule was changed to 34 before the league ceased operations.

 

The league folded after a year and a half, but it was just starting to get noticed. The owners planned to return to play in the following year, but the players were no longer trusting of the owners.

 

https://en.wikipedia...all_Association


#43 SgtSchmidt11

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Posted 23 February 2021 - 10:46 AM

 

Full free agency at 21. Everyone likes to talk free market - so let the players sell their services, choose where they want to play, and allow the teams to build their rosters without restrictions.

This would completely and utterly destroy minor league baseball.

 

No draftees would receive bonuses of any real amount.All the players would go play college ball.I can't fathom all the repercussions this idea would have, and I don't like 95% of them that pop into my head.

 

I mean, Royce Lewis would be a FA!What would/could you sign a player like that for?Why would you?He's not likely to be a major asset this year.


#44 Nine of twelve

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Posted 23 February 2021 - 07:30 PM

 

Full free agency at 21. Everyone likes to talk free market - so let the players sell their services, choose where they want to play, and allow the teams to build their rosters without restrictions.

The key to this theoretically-correct scenario is the last two words. Right now 5 or so teams have hardly any restrictions and 5 or so teams have restrictions that are so formidable that it's very difficult to succeed. The only way I can see to reduce restrictions to a fair level is far more extensive revenue sharing. Otherwise it's like Sielk said.


#45 TopGunn#22

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Posted 24 February 2021 - 07:36 AM

I could see a mandate for nothing longer than a 3-year contract.Both player and ownership would rather not be saddled with a poor contract for an extended period of time. I also think a players service time should start as soon as they play in a major league game.I for one look forward to the new player (Kiriloff) as opposed to the older player (Rosario) who I have seen enough of.The system they have now isn't perfect but RADICAL changes are not needed.When you make radical changes, all sides suffer from unintended consequences.


#46 old nurse

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Posted 24 February 2021 - 09:06 AM

When you have a bad year going into free agency it does limit your value even in the old days. Ruesse had the premise right. You are rewarded for what you do. Dozier and Plouffe were.  Their last years were down. Dozier still got a 9 million deal from Washington, Plouffe 5 million from Oakland

 

For a career Plouffe made 22 million, Dozier 30. Do not forget that they had a very good payday along the way


#47 spycake

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Posted 24 February 2021 - 03:03 PM

 

Reusse's point is a big reason Dozier was not given any type of option for 2019. The buyout and/or the money for '19 would have been too big for what he would have been projected to produce. Typically in a long-term deal like that you would have seen a club option for a 5th year "just in case". But

Dozier entered '19 as a 32 year old with a skill set that was already in the declining phase of the aging pattern for hitters.

Thanks, this actually makes more sense than what Reusse said!

 

Reusse described Dozier as "a player who in a former time would have been signing a contract extension in the spring of 2018 to stick around into the next decade at sizable dollars". I'm sure a few guys did this, but I don't think this was ever the general rule -- the Twins certainly didn't sign a lot of extensions like that, and we weren't unique in that regard. Plenty of Dozier-like veterans still reached free agency every winter, where their most recent production was a big (now declining) factor in their next contract. Dozier just had the unfortunate timing of having a mediocre walk year.

 

Jack's point is a little more interesting. Perhaps in a past era, the Twins would have been more willing to pony up for a 5th year or an option on his original contract. Although another factor is the qualifying offer, which was much closer to a "5th year option" for the Twins than past free agency compensation schemes.

 

And on the player side, once they've secured ~$20 mil or whatever, it's still probably not a bad idea to put a high price on that extra year, as a good walk year can still pay off pretty well (if not quite as well as in the past). At the very least, it can get the QO out of the way a little earlier, which can broaden their market.


#48 JLease

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Posted 24 February 2021 - 04:01 PM

The lack of better revenue sharing is baseball's biggest problem in adjusting the system in any way that allows for competitive balance.

 

The players were all about this system for 30 years particularly when they could count on teams like the Yankees setting the market for salaries and smaller clubs shelling out in order to compete. now every club is getting smarter and more granular in their player analytics and getting more sophisticated in valuing players and you have fewer and fewer contract that look absurd. (Pujols would never get a 10 year deal in today's game) they didn't care about revenue sharing so long as the market was being set by the highest payroll teams. now it's being set more by analytics.

 

If baseball can't find a better way to normalize local revenue levels then we're not going to see an end to the current status where teams (especially small to mid-market) find it better to tank with miniscule payrolls for multiple years and make little pretense of competing. but good luck getting the Dodgers/Yankees/Red Sox/Mets/Phillies/Angels/Cubs/etc to give up those big-time dollars. especially when their ownership groups may have taken on significant debt loads in buying the franchise.

 

The NFL avoided this problem for a long time, because the national tv money was the real determinant. And with a harder cap, it manages the problem well. The lack of guaranteed contracts makes it easier, but with so much money being tied in to bonuses now, the contracts mean little to either the players or management much of the time.


#49 Nine of twelve

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Posted 24 February 2021 - 08:22 PM

 

 (Pujols would never get a 10 year deal in today's game)

He should never have gotten this deal at the time it was signed. It is totally absurd that any team would have done this. Check it out, and don't miss the fifth bullet point.

 

https://www.spotrac....ert-pujols-795/

 


#50 prouster

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 01:14 PM

 

Some of you may be too young to remember the Senior League. It was a short-lived league of older players. Though attendance was low, they had a TV deal and we were all able to catch some games if we wanted to watch.

 

The games were better than you would expect and some players, both hitters and pitchers, put up astronomical stats. At the beginning, the rule was that players had to be 35 or older, but this rule was changed to 34 before the league ceased operations.

 

The league folded after a year and a half, but it was just starting to get noticed. The owners planned to return to play in the following year, but the players were no longer trusting of the owners.

 

https://en.wikipedia...all_Association

I'd never heard of this league. Some really awesome names on the rosters. Jim Rice. Vida Blue. Fergie Jenkins. Rollie Fingers.


#51 Major League Ready

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 02:00 PM

 

Isn't this how it should be? How does this not make sense? Shouldn't players be paid for what they are expected to produce rather than for what they have produced in the past?

 

 

 

 

It absolutely is how it should be, and it totally makes sense. What doesn't make sense is that wasn't always the thinking. 

 

Seth, I don't think teams ever paid players BECAUSE they felt they owed them for past performance. This would make absolutely no sense for players switching teams. They simply put way too much weight on past performance when predicting future performance. Teams (and fans) got very caught up in the idea of signing a player who had been great. It happens here all the time. Teams have different personnel with more advanced analytical skills than they did a decade ago.

 

My perspective is that players really loved getting paid long after they stopped producing or getting paid a lot for modest production. Of course, teams came to recognize this was detrimental to fielding the best team and modified their practices. Players and some here said you greedy owners are colluding and players are getting treated unfairly. What really happened was the teams simply adjusted as a result of many bad contracts hurting teams.

 

This adjustment makes the funds not committed to these bad contracts available to other players. The money still gets spent but more equitably. I too don't understand why anyone has a problem with the adaptation teams have made. 

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#52 The Wise One

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 02:13 PM

 

The lack of better revenue sharing is baseball's biggest problem in adjusting the system in any way that allows for competitive balance.

 

The players were all about this system for 30 years particularly when they could count on teams like the Yankees setting the market for salaries and smaller clubs shelling out in order to compete. now every club is getting smarter and more granular in their player analytics and getting more sophisticated in valuing players and you have fewer and fewer contract that look absurd. (Pujols would never get a 10 year deal in today's game) they didn't care about revenue sharing so long as the market was being set by the highest payroll teams. now it's being set more by analytics.

 

If baseball can't find a better way to normalize local revenue levels then we're not going to see an end to the current status where teams (especially small to mid-market) find it better to tank with miniscule payrolls for multiple years and make little pretense of competing. but good luck getting the Dodgers/Yankees/Red Sox/Mets/Phillies/Angels/Cubs/etc to give up those big-time dollars. especially when their ownership groups may have taken on significant debt loads in buying the franchise.

 

The NFL avoided this problem for a long time, because the national tv money was the real determinant. And with a harder cap, it manages the problem well. The lack of guaranteed contracts makes it easier, but with so much money being tied in to bonuses now, the contracts mean little to either the players or management much of the time.

Revenue sharing right now starts at the basis of 48% is shared then the exceptions start. Debt and operations are part of the exceptions to revenue sharing.

Houston got good with a tank. No one else has. Bad organizations are just that. No amount of revenue sharing is going to change that. A couple of mid level free agents is not going to make a team great, either. 


#53 Major League Ready

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 03:01 PM

 

I would start more with tweaks than wholesale changes - 

 

- Fix the service time issue so that 6 years is the true maximum.

 

- Start arbitration the off-season after a player hits the rookie service time mark.

 

- Institute a version of the "luxury tax" at the bottom of the payroll scale (cheapo tax?). Same idea of not having a hard line, but rather using incentives to limit how often clubs can really cut payroll to nothing. That would both increase the amount of money going to players as well as reduce the number of clubs that will be completely tanking in any particular season.

 

How about raising 1st year to $750, 2nd year to $1M and arbitration starting year 3? I think it would be difficult to properly gauge value for the 2nd year. Take Arraez for example, his numbers were better his rookie year. Two years would provide a better basis for determining an arbitration value.

 

I like the concept of a payroll floor but it has challenges. We could be forcing teams to sign free agents that would take playing time from the players they need to develop. The only way to prevent this would be to sit the guys they are paying to reach the payroll floor. Not good for the team and players certainly are not going to sign up for that deal.

 

I would actually watch rookies play than a team with some mediocre veterans. I bet others would feel the same. Therefore attendance would be down and that type of floor would make it difficult on the lowest 6-10 teams. Then, as fans should we expect those teams to spend more aggressively when they do put together a team with a chance. 


#54 Cap'n Piranha

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 03:57 PM

My proposal to fix this;

 

  • All National revenue is equally split amongst all 30 clubs (after MLB corporate operating expenses are paid--commissioner, umps, marketing, etc.).
  • The first $100M of each team's local revenue is taken by the league, and then split back out in such a way that teams still remain in the same order in terms of total revenue
  • The next $50M of each team's local revenue is taken by the league at 50%, and split back out same as above
  • All revenue each team earns above $150M is kept by the earning team in totality.

This system ensures smaller teams will have access to more revenue, while still encouraging the big-market teams to maximize their revenue.With this established, the below changes are implemented.

  • A salary floor is established at 1/30th of 45% of the previous year's total MLB revenue (national and local, and would include any sales like MLBAM, or expansion fees, but not the purchase of existing franchises).If MLB revenue is $10B, that means the floor is 1/30th of $4.5B, which is $150M.
  • A hard salary cap is established at 15% above the salary floor.At $10B in revenue, that works out to a cap of $172.5M.If every team spent to that, the salary share of revenue would be 51.8%, so splitting the difference, players would get 48.4% of all revenue (which is an increase to where they're at today).
  • The salary cap and salary floor apply only to players who are either on a team's 26 man roster OR have signed a contract after their initial drafting/international signing contract
  • Any team which does not meet the floor is ineligible for any form of revenue sharing
  • Teams which exceed the salary cap have their first $200M of local revenue taxed at 100% (some of which will be distributed back to them), and all subsequent revenue taxed at 50%

Small teams will be forced to invest every year in players, and large teams can still spend like crazy to win a world series if they want, but the revenue hit would only be sustainable for a couple of years at most.Now for the changes to the players;

  • All players enter unrestricted free agency in the offseason after the regular season during which they are 27 (even if it's only on the last regularly scheduled day of the offseason).They enter restricted free agency (any team can make any offer they want, and if the player signs, their current team has the right to match.No poison pills--RFA deals can only cover years, money, and no trade clauses.Opt-outs are not allowed in RFA deals) two offseasons before UFA.The salary for any player who has yet to reach RFA is $2M a year
  • No player can account for more than 15% of a team's salary cap, no two players can account for more than 25%, no five players can account for more than 40%, and no 10 players can account for more than 60%.This is voided if MLB revises the salary cap down after a contract was signed.

This means teams have no reason to not bring players up as soon as they think they're ready, and players make more money early on.It will be much harder to assemble super teams, which means small market teams with clean balance sheets into the future will be able to offer more money than big market teams (for example, the maximum contract for a team spending to the cap in a year with $10B in revenue is $25.875M.If a team already has a player making that amount, the most they could pay another player is $17.25M, whereas a team with no player making that amount could offer it).

 

I think this solves the problem of everyone--small market teams get guaranteed revenue, big market teams still get to make more than the small market teams, the players get to make more money earlier, prospects get called up faster, and fans get to see 30 teams that are all going to be competing pretty much every year, since it would be hard to put together a team that would be awful, and still spend $150M or more.

 


#55 Major League Ready

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 04:46 PM

 

My proposal to fix this;

 

  • All National revenue is equally split amongst all 30 clubs (after MLB corporate operating expenses are paid--commissioner, umps, marketing, etc.).
  • The first $100M of each team's local revenue is taken by the league, and then split back out in such a way that teams still remain in the same order in terms of total revenue
  • The next $50M of each team's local revenue is taken by the league at 50%, and split back out same as above
  • All revenue each team earns above $150M is kept by the earning team in totality.

This system ensures smaller teams will have access to more revenue, while still encouraging the big-market teams to maximize their revenue.With this established, the below changes are implemented.

  • A salary floor is established at 1/30th of 45% of the previous year's total MLB revenue (national and local, and would include any sales like MLBAM, or expansion fees, but not the purchase of existing franchises).If MLB revenue is $10B, that means the floor is 1/30th of $4.5B, which is $150M.
  • A hard salary cap is established at 15% above the salary floor.At $10B in revenue, that works out to a cap of $172.5M.If every team spent to that, the salary share of revenue would be 51.8%, so splitting the difference, players would get 48.4% of all revenue (which is an increase to where they're at today).
  • The salary cap and salary floor apply only to players who are either on a team's 26 man roster OR have signed a contract after their initial drafting/international signing contract
  • Any team which does not meet the floor is ineligible for any form of revenue sharing
  • Teams which exceed the salary cap have their first $200M of local revenue taxed at 100% (some of which will be distributed back to them), and all subsequent revenue taxed at 50%

Small teams will be forced to invest every year in players, and large teams can still spend like crazy to win a world series if they want, but the revenue hit would only be sustainable for a couple of years at most.Now for the changes to the players;

  • All players enter unrestricted free agency in the offseason after the regular season during which they are 27 (even if it's only on the last regularly scheduled day of the offseason).They enter restricted free agency (any team can make any offer they want, and if the player signs, their current team has the right to match.No poison pills--RFA deals can only cover years, money, and no trade clauses.Opt-outs are not allowed in RFA deals) two offseasons before UFA.The salary for any player who has yet to reach RFA is $2M a year
  • No player can account for more than 15% of a team's salary cap, no two players can account for more than 25%, no five players can account for more than 40%, and no 10 players can account for more than 60%.This is voided if MLB revises the salary cap down after a contract was signed.

This means teams have no reason to not bring players up as soon as they think they're ready, and players make more money early on.It will be much harder to assemble super teams, which means small market teams with clean balance sheets into the future will be able to offer more money than big market teams (for example, the maximum contract for a team spending to the cap in a year with $10B in revenue is $25.875M.If a team already has a player making that amount, the most they could pay another player is $17.25M, whereas a team with no player making that amount could offer it).

 

I think this solves the problem of everyone--small market teams get guaranteed revenue, big market teams still get to make more than the small market teams, the players get to make more money earlier, prospects get called up faster, and fans get to see 30 teams that are all going to be competing pretty much every year, since it would be hard to put together a team that would be awful, and still spend $150M or more.

 

Have you actually calculated how much revenue the Yankees / Dodgers give up and how much the Rays / As gain. You are talking about an enormous change to game. You are also suggesting change that probably has an enormous hit to the value of large market teams and a gain to small market teams. I am wondering if this is all back of a napkin theory or have you actually calculated the impact? Owners are not going to ask other other owners to give them hundreds of millions in franchise value. 

 

 

 


#56 Cap'n Piranha

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 04:58 PM

 

Have you actually calculated how much revenue the Yankees / Dodgers give up and how much the Rays / As gain. You are talking about an enormous change. I am wondering if this is all back of a napkin theory or have you actually calculated the impact?

 

Per club revenue is a black box, so no, there is no way any person outside of MLB's central office would be able to truly crunch the numbers on this.The idea here is that each team should be able to get at least $250M in revenue ($100M or so from National Sources, and at least $150M from revenue sharing).The "poorest" team would probably end up around $250M in revenue, with the richest in the $350M to $400M range (if even 5 teams end up exactly at $250M, the other 25 average out to $350M).

 

Would the owners of rich teams be super excited about this?Maybe not.But how much are the Yankees, Dodgers, Red Sox, etc. worth if 5-10 teams fold?I say that because baseball already has a fan problem, which will continue to accelerate as their average fan gets older and older.They need to attract new fans now, and that's hard to do outside of NY, LA, and Boston if there's a feeling those other teams won't compete.


#57 Major League Ready

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 05:21 PM

Revenue is far from a black box. The vast majority of revenue requires sales tax be collected and is therefore public information. There are also subscription services that provide this date with a high degree of accuracy. 

 

You would have a point If the likelihood of them failing without taking on such a drastic change was high. I agree keeping the parity at least status quo is important. I would like to see it enhanced. However, the kind of change you are suggesting is to drastic to have any merit with league. You just can't ask 1/3 of the members to transfer 1/3 of their market value to the lower 1/3 of the league. I would think the league has bylaws to prevent this from happening.

 

Baseball has increased revenue significantly year over year by offering amenities that provide an experience beyond just baseball. I suspect the next phase of evolution will be to speed up the pace of play. I also suspect rule changes that promote more balls being put into play. There is too large a gap between players other than the pitcher and catcher being engaged. I think the league would be just fine with tweaks to make these things happen without changing service time or revenue sharing. 


#58 spycake

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 06:48 PM

 

How about raising 1st year to $750, 2nd year to $1M and arbitration starting year 3? I think it would be difficult to properly gauge value for the 2nd year. Take Arraez for example, his numbers were better his rookie year. Two years would provide a better basis for determining an arbitration value.

Raising the minimum is good, but the 2nd year arbitration process/scale could be set to whatever parameters you want.For example, maybe the max award for year 2 is $1.5 mil or something.

 

I think it would be good to get away altogether from the automatic contract renewals at team-determined prices!


#59 spycake

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 06:50 PM

 

I would start more with tweaks than wholesale changes - 

 

- Fix the service time issue so that 6 years is the true maximum.

Just curious -- how you propose fixing the service time issue like this?

 

Would Jeremy's general proposal -- basing FA on years from signing or by age -- count as just a "tweak"?

 

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#60 Major League Ready

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Posted 26 February 2021 - 07:18 PM

 

Raising the minimum is good, but the 2nd year arbitration process/scale could be set to whatever parameters you want.For example, maybe the max award for year 2 is $1.5 mil or something.

 

I think it would be good to get away altogether from the automatic contract renewals at team-determined prices!

 

That's a good point. Adapting business models to new conditions generally takes an outline of ideas and lots of tweaking. Validate ideas, develop new tweaks and repeat until the end product in flushed out. However, I think this two sides will have a problem ever agreeing to parameters of any complexity.