Batter's Box Interactive Magazine Batter's Box Interactive Magazine Batter's Box Interactive Magazine
With all the 10+ year deals going on and the Jays having 3 franchise players in Vlad, Bo, and Alek the question becomes should the Jays do it? How have guys like those 3 done in the past?

Using the old Lahman Database which is up to date for 1871-2021 (the 2022 portion hasn't been added yet) as it works nicely for queries and the like (Access based so I can do what I want without paying a fee to one of the services out there).

Lets go with Vlad first. He has been in the majors from age 20-23 with a line of 284/358/504 while he is 6'2" 240 lbs officially. Height I figure we can trust, but weight is a crapshoot, especially since we all know your weight isn't the same at 20 as it is at 30 or at 40. So lets start cutting down a bit... I limited it to players from 1951 to now (pre 1951 there are a few stats issues, plus 70+ years should be enough) who had 500+ AB's pre age 24 and 24+ (safe to say Vlad will have 500+ AB's for ages 24 and beyond).
  • OPS of 800-899 pre 24 (Vlad at 862): 538 players
  • Slg of 450-550 pre 24 also (Vlad at 504): down to 87 players
  • 200+ lbs (Vlad at 240): now down to 47 players
OK, that cuts it down a LOT to players somewhat similar (200+ lbs, slg% in eyeshot of Vlad, OPS in eyeshot of Vlad). Average of 1202 AB's pre age 24, 4074 age 24+. The only sub 1000 PA's are active players, 26 have 4000+ PA post age 23 = 55% with an 829 OPS vs 838 pre-age 24. The most PA go to Cal Ripken (9k+ post 23), the other 4 with 7k+ are Jim Rice, Nick Markakis, Robinson Cano, and Chipper Jones with Edwin Encarnacion just shy (6.4k). Jeremy Hermida has the lowest PA post age 23 of those who qualified who are retired. This makes me feel a bit better about a long term deal for Vlad but also puts a limit on it - Jim Rice is an interesting comparison: By age 23 he had a 3rd place MVP finish, 122 OPS+ (Vlad 135), and was being used a lot at DH. From 24-36 he had a 129 OPS+, an MVP award and 4 more top 5 finishes. Just 5.4 bWAR pre 24, 42.4 post. I see that as a reasonable goal for Vlad - he already has had a better start than Rice and has more defensive value (Rice was never a gold glove candidate). That would be worth roughly $381 million in today's world ($9 mil per WAR) over a 12 year period. Middle of the pack is Troy Glaus who is quite different from Vlad (3B GG) who only once in his career got MVP votes (age 29 in Toronto) 10.3 WAR pre 24, 27.7 after - worth about $243 mil over 10 years. Jeff Burroughs was also in the middle (ex-Jay) who at 23 won an MVP (thanks to RBI's as he was just a 3.6 WAR player that year) 7.7 WAR pre 24, 24+ 10.0 WAR - here is a worst case - value $90 mil over 11 season.

So we see what I consider a reasonable hope (Jim Rice), a middle case but plays at a different position (Glaus) and a nightmare (Burroughs) worth $381, $243, $90 mil respectively. Average of $238 mil for a 10+ year contract. Increase to $10 mil vs $9 per WAR and the average goes up to $264 mil. All reasonable cases to use, all large guys who didn't age as well as hoped, just one a good fielder (Glaus) the other 2 OF/DH's. Other names on the list are Ellis Valentine, Yasiel Puig, Bryce Harper, Kris Bryant, Giancarlo Stanton to give a few ideas on the weaker side of it. It is funny that 3 Jays who were traded more or less for each other on list (Scott Rolen, Troy Glaus, and Edwin Encarnacion). So what does it all mean? It means Vlad could be a bargain at $300 mil for a decade+, but odds are he'd be a net loss. $200 mil I'd see as a bargain for the Jays, but there is that Burroughs/Puig risk, also need to consider Stanton who looked fantastic when signed but, while providing a lot of WAR isn't quite up to his pay level (sub 30 games at 29 and 30, under 140 each of the 2 years since, just 3 5+ WAR seasons in his 13 ML seasons). Depends on how much you think he'll be able to produce like Jim Rice from now until age 33 (135 OPS+, peak of 157, 42.3 WAR, 5 years of 5+ WAR over those 10 seasons, but after that, age 34 and beyond he was 0 WAR 96 OPS+) or if you fear he'll be an injury issue like Stanton or will just flop like Burroughs (10 WAR over 11 seasons).
Let's check Bo now. He started at 21 and after his age 24 season has a 297/340/491 line while playing SS 6'0" 190 lbs. Same limits as Vlad with 500 minimum AB's, career starting no earlier than 1951.
  • OPS of 770-870 pre age 25 (Bo at 831): 211 players
  • Slg of 450-550 pre 25 (Bo at 491): 152 players
  • 170-210 lbs (Bo at 190): 86 players
Not as small a pool as Vlad but small enough to work with. Average AB pre 25: 1464 (Bo 1611), post 24: 4200. The guys sub 1000 AB's post 24 were Ron Blomberg (injuries), Alex Verdugo (active), Ian Happ (active), Tony Conigliaro (beaned in the eye at 22 and never the same), and Phil Plantier (age 24 his last good year). Most AB's (8k+) are George Brett, Billy Williams, Ernie Banks, Reggie Jackson, Barry Bonds, Eddie Murray, Cal Ripken (all HOF or PED prevented HOF). Clearly Bo has a heck of set of guys on his list. Median for AB's is 4432.5 Travis Fryman (18.9 WAR post 24, 3 time All-Star)-Richie Hebner (18.4 WAR post 24, no awards though). 14 HOF'ers total out of the 86 listed, good news is many were SS or 3B (Ripken, Banks the SS, Brett, Chipper Jones, Schmidt, Killebrew, Santo at 3B). Lots of ex-Jays on the list too (Brad Fullmer, Troy Tulowitzki, Jesse Barfield, Jose Cruz Jr, George Bell, Shawn Green). Post 25 average OBP: 348, Slg: 461 OPS: 809. Not bad. Not bad at all. But when you filter to infielders you can see the issue quickly - injuries are a massive factor. For some they had to move to 1B (Banks) others from SS to 3B (Ripken), but the potential is there for a crazy good career for Bo, as is the potential for a nightmare (generally only due to injuries not as much the Burroughs factor).

Filtered to just guys whose #1 position was shortstop you get just Paul DeJong, Francisco Lindor, Alex Cintron, Trea Turner, Troy Tulowitzki, Cal Ripken. Guys with 300+ games at SS but more somewhere else were Tom Tresh, Travis Fryman, and Ernie Banks. That cuts it down drastically. 9 players total to consider since 1951. Not a lot. Lets check them out.
  • Alex Cintron: barely qualified, every year from 25 on was a negative WAR season, his best was age 24 at 2.7 so not really comparable to Bo
  • Paul DeJong: active with the Cardinals, just an 87 OPS+ from age 25 season on, 7.7 WAR over 4 years. Ugh. After a 53 OPS+ last year I suspect St Louis is looking to dump him. When he made the majors they signed him to a 6 years/$26M contract. Oops. His first 2 years were solid at 2.7 and 2.9 WAR, year 3 fantastic (age 25) at 5.3 but hasn't been the same since COVID.
  • Tom Tresh: excellent hitter, poor fielder who had to be moved to the OF. 13.5 WAR age 25 on. Only lasted to 30. 126 OPS+ pre 25 is scary close to Bo (127) but was moved to the OF at 24, then back to SS at 29 in a desperate attempt to keep his career going.
  • Travis Fryman: 18.9 WAR from 25 to the end. Was mainly a 3B who was solid there but tried at SS for 23/24 as a regular. Didn't take.
  • Trea Turner: signed an 11 year/$300M contract with the Phillies this winter. In his age 25-29 seasons (5 years) he had 22.9 WAR. Very solid on defense (always positive)
  • Francisco Lindor: on a 10 years/$341M contract with the Mets now, age 25 to now 14.7 WAR, 3+ each year except 2020 (on pace for it then) but has far more defensive value than Bo.
  • Troy Tulowitzki: age 25-end (10 years) was worth 30.8 WAR, his long term deal was signed later than ideal but for Colorado probably still worked out ($157.75M over 10 years)
  • Ernie Banks: was at SS until 31, then at 1B until the end. But from 25-30 while at SS he produced 43.9 WAR, plus 12.7 from 31-40 at 1B, negative WAR each of the last 3 years as he pushed for 500 HR.
  • Cal Ripken: record for most consecutive games played, first ballot HOF. If Bo can be in eyeshot of him he would have an amazing career.

So from Cinton/DeJong - disasters, to 'meh' Tresh/Fryman, to 'we will see' Turner/Lindor, to 'solid value' Tulowitzki, to 'HOF' Banks & Rikpen. Which category will Bo land in? What are they each worth?
  1. C/D: nothing
  2. T/F: 10-15 WAR range - $90-$150 mil
  3. T/L: 15-22 WAR so far, then signed to 10 year deals of $300+ mil.
  4. Tulo: 30 WAR, worth a $270-300 mil deal but the last years could be ugly with little bonus value.
  5. B/R: HOF - name your price. We are looking at 40+ WAR.

So which category do you put Bo into? Right now 2 is the most likely one, but #3 looks very possible or even probable depending how much you discount his defense. What is funny is FanGraphs has his defense as negative his rookie year, then positive in 20/21/22 but all 4 systems they use for projections have him as a negative in 2023. All have him between 3.7 and 4.3 WAR though. I'm guessing after the horrible way the last game went he will be putting a TON of focus on his defense this year to remove the area everyone can complain about, and if he does so successfully $300-$400 mil over 10+ years becomes the base for his long term deal.


Now for the tough one - Manoah. Pitchers are a crap shoot - the old rule is they are all one pitch away from retirement (Gord Ash learned that the hard way when he traded for Mike Sirotka who never threw even one pitch as a Blue Jay). So what are the parameters to use here? Manoah is 6'6" 285 lbs - one very big guy. Through age 24 he has thrown 308 innings with 9.0 K/9 IP and 2.7 BB/9 and 0.8 HR/9 and hit 31 batters (leading the league both years). With no statistical issues I figure I'll go with all of baseball history for comparison here (1871 to now, not including Negro Leagues as Lahman hasn't added those in yet)
  • Pitchers weighing 250+ lbs - 168 players (from over 10k)
  • 100+ IP pre 25 - 35 players (big cut down)
  • K/9 pre 25 over 7.5 - 16 players
  • BB/9 pre 25 under 4.0 - 9 players

I figure down to 9 players in baseball history is shrinking it down more than enough. Changing the weight rule could make a big difference but that I'd figure is a (sorry for the pun) large issue.
So who are we down to? Split between relievers and starters.
  • Madison Bumgarner: 116 ERA+ pre 25 over 952 IP (so more mileage than Manoah), 25-32 (still active) 109 ERA+ over 1240 IP, 2 time All-Star, 18.9 bWAR. Age 24 was his amazing post season.
  • Josh Johnson: Familiar to Jay fans, 122 ERA+ pre 25, 124 after over 725 IP, but done at 29 (the year he was in Toronto). 18.9 bWAR from 25 to 29.
  • Michael Pineda: 101 ERA+ pre 25 (1 season), 103 ERA+ age 25-33 over 837 IP, still active at 34, 10.2 bWAR. Currently a free agent.
  • Carlos Zambrano: 133 ERA+ pre 25 mostly as a starter, 25-31 (long retired) 112 ERA+ over 1196 IP. 19.9 bWAR.
  • ------------------
  • Jonathan Broxton: a reliever, so limited use in comparison. Played until age 33 with a 110 ERA+ from 25-33 vs 145 pre 25.
  • Michael Feliz: another reliever, 78 ERA+ pre 25, 79 ERA+ since, still active at 30 this season.
  • Kenley Jansen: yes, a reliever, 170 ERA+ pre 25, 25-34 157 ERA+ and still active.
  • Joe Jimenez: Reliever, 86 ERA+ pre 25, 81 ERA+ since, still active at age 28 this year.
  • Will Smith: 92 ERA+ pre 25, some start, some relief. 25-32 (still active) 130 ERA+ all in relief over 365 IP. 5.8 bWAR
So very few to compare to him for control, K ability, and pitching pre 25 while weighing 250+ lbs. Just 4 starters and 5 relievers (one reliever was a starter who moved to relief pre 25). Most still active as well. I feared this would happen when doing this comparison. For the 26 who matched weight and innings but not K or BB ratios we see 6 guys who had sub 100 IP post 25 - all had 1+ HR/9 IP, 5 of 6 were walking more than Manoah. So I don't see him being in that horror category. The remaining pitchers averaged 857 IP from 25 to the end. The 1000+ IP group was just 7 pitchers - Freddy Garcia, Ivan Nova, Darren Oliver, Carl Pavano, Brad Penny, CC Sabathia, Carlos Silva. Only CC Sabathia is encouraging to me - 107 ERA+ pre 25 (2 time All-Star), 25-end 120 ERA+ over 2604 IP 5 times top 5 Cy votes (1 win) 47.1 bWAR. Clearly that is the best case for Manoah.

Gotta say this depressed me a bit. If I was the Jays I'd be VERY careful about a long term deal for Manoah. If he can be like Sabathia then he is a $400 million+ pitcher. Bumgarner is a $190 million max value and is probably the 2nd best option. Zambrano is similar to Bumgarner and probably the closest when factoring in pre-25 success/body type. So a 10+ year deal for $150 million would be fine, but going past that the Jays would be taking on far too much risk imo.


All 3 cases are interesting. The Jays have very tough choices to make. Bo's talent at SS is rare, and when someone has that skill they normally are good through 30 at least, and can be a HOF level guy (2 of 9 is insanely great odds). Vlad I was surprised to see I want a Jim Rice career at this point - his size and talent suggest that is a good target. I hope for better, but realistically worse is very possible/probable. Unlike Bo Vlad cannot be moved further down the defensive spectrum either (already a 1B/DH) but also unlike Bo Vlad won a Gold Glove in 2022. Manoah ... oh boy. A long term deal has to be at a 'bargain' rate of sub $200 million or the Jays are being foolish imo. I strongly suspect they'll just go year to year with him as odds are by the time he is a free agent after his age 29 season he won't have a lot left given past history of guys his size who were starting pitchers. Signing him to age 32 wouldn't be a bad idea, but I doubt he'd go for it. Given he is pre-arbitration still any deal would need to be discounted for the early years too, so a $100-$125 mil 9 year deal (buying out 4 years of free agency) would be good for the Jays but I can't see him going for it as being a free agent after age 29 could get him a 5+ year deal then for $200+ million but at age 32+ odds are low unless he ages far better than anyone else over 250lbs has.
Do long term deals make sense | 85 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Michael - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 08:29 AM EST (#426302) #
I'm not sure it makes as much sense to focus on weight in the projections - especially for pitchers. I'd say if you ignored weight, and looked only at age and numbers and role (I.e., just starting pitchers, no relievers) you'd have a better shot. And with the pitchers it is a little hard to tell because K-rate varies as you may need to do more K-rate normalized for league since modern pitchers strike out many more batters per 9 IP than older pitchers.

On the hitters/fielders the weight might make more sense, especially for tough to defend positions, but even still I'm in the "we aren't selling jeans" camp.
grjas - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 08:34 AM EST (#426303) #
Thanks JN for all the work on this. Very interesting. I don’t envy management with these 3 decisions, especially given (a) I think these players’ first choice will be to test FA (b) the market seems to have lost its marbles (exhibit a- Correa clown show) and (c) if they decide to trade them before they leave, the timing may be within their key competitive window.
Mike Green - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 09:25 AM EST (#426304) #
Manoah has an ERA+ of 158 in 308 major league innings.  I tried a Statcast with tight ERA+ and IP limits and didn't get any viable modern results for comparison purposes.  So I loosened them a little (pitchers with at least 60% of appearances as starts up to age 24 with 208<IP<408 and 143<ERA+<173).  I got 4 modern comps- Roy Oswalt, Matt Harvey, Mike Soroka and Aaron Sele.  Oswalt is a particularly good comp, although obviously not in build.    Oswalt was consistently good in his 20s and delivered 7.6 WAR from age 30-32.  Sele was mostly injured from 25-27 and delivered 11.5 WAR from age 28-31 and of no value afterwards.  Harvey had a big year at age 26 and was a below replacement level player for the remainder of his career.  Soroka you know about. 

Subjectively, I like Manoah better than any of them, even Oswalt.  But, as John says, objectively, there's a lot of risk with pitchers.  The club should only be making a deal which accounts for that risk.  A reasonable trade-off is to pay him well for his arb years in advance, in exchange for 2 or 3 additional years at the end at $20-$25 M per.  Which is in the range that John suggests. 
bpoz - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 09:58 AM EST (#426305) #
If the Jays are successful or decide on a 10 year extension:

1) They may still be able to trade them after 3-5 years depending on the players performance and salary market level.

2) Trade for a star. Verlander (Houston) and Price (Toronto) from Detroit. Donaldson to Toronto, Arenado to St Louis, Lindor to NYM, Soto, Machado & Snell to SD, Betts & Scherzer to LAD, Realmuto to Phils. Yelich to Milwaukee, which is interesting because I think he may be a FA soon and just turned 32. Would be an old FA.

3) I was not trying to cherry pick in #2 above, but maybe I did. Looks to me that every team receiving the star did not regret it. Also Halladay to Philly and Cone to the Jays.

Mike Green - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 10:05 AM EST (#426306) #
I ran comps for Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (first basemen with 1861<PA<2461 and 130<OPS+<140 up until age 23, Guerrero Jr. has 2161 PA and an OPS+ of 135).  I got 2 names from the lively ball era- Hal Trosky and Eddie Murray.   Trosky delivered 5.6 WAR after the age of 26 as migraine headaches derailed his career and Murray went into the Hall of Fame.  If I loosen the criteria to 125<OPS+<145, I get the same names.  Trosky had the same up-and-down pattern through age 23 that Vladdy has had.  Murray came up at 21 and was durable and consistent.  It was little shock that he continued that consistency through age 34 with an entirely typical aging pattern (peak at 27-28). 

At this point, I wouldn't want to pay Guerrero Jr. on the basis that he will have Eddie Murray's career.  Somewhere between Trosky and Murray is a good bet (perhaps 45-50 WAR career with the bulk of it coming in his arb years).  I doubt that there will be an agreement. 
greenfrog - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 10:18 AM EST (#426307) #
There seem to be three types of extensions that arguably have a better chance of succeeding:

-The early career extension (Longoria, Franco, Acuna Jr.)
-The fair value medium term extension (Trout, Pujols — extension #1)
-The team-friendly medium-term extension (Halladay, Ramirez, some of the Atlanta extensions)

Unfortunately Bo and Vladdy are likely in another category, the full-value long-term extension (the Tatis Jr. / Betts / Devers category).
greenfrog - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 10:45 AM EST (#426308) #
It seems to me that there are at least two factors that may end up precluding an extension for either Bo or Vladdy. The first is the uncertainty around Bo’s defense. If he will no longer be a viable defensive SS in a few years, is that a player the Jays want to give a massive extension to? The second is the uncertainty surrounding Vladdy’s future offensive performance. Is he the superlative hitter he was in 2021, or the less disciplined one he was in 2022? How will his chronic wrist injury and body type impact his long-term offensive performance? For these reasons, the Jays valuations of these players may not align with that of the players themselves (and their agents).
Magpie - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 11:20 AM EST (#426309) #
The guy I always think of as resembling Manoah - just in terms of sheer size - is Lance Lynn, who's actually been a better pitcher in his 30s. But pitchers... no one knows anything.
grjas - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 11:41 AM EST (#426310) #
I find the plethora of long contracts-particularly for SS- quite bizarre in an era where youth is needed to turn on a 100mph fastball…or to throw one. I suspect there will be a lot of boat anchors on teams in a few years time.
lexomatic - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 12:27 PM EST (#426311) #
<br>I'm not sure it makes as much sense to focus on weight in the projections

I'm going to agree. Especially with inaccurate & unreliable listed weights. Guys like Valenzuela,Reuschel got huge, no idea about size and weight.
ISLAND BOY - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 12:34 PM EST (#426312) #
Another big pitcher was CC Sabathia who was listed at 6'6, 300 pounds. He was able to pitch into his age 39 season. Mark Buehrle wasn't as big, 6'2 240 pounds, but still a good sized dude and he had a long career, too. I don't know that size matters as much as the ability to adapt as a pitcher when they lose a few MPH off their fastballs and have to learn to vary speeds more and locate their pitches.
dalimon5 - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 01:01 PM EST (#426313) #
This is the best thread in a few years on this site. Thanks for starting John. It really gives a good picture of "The Decisions," that loom large. Not as simple as "don't be cheap, pay up."
John Northey - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 01:31 PM EST (#426314) #
For those saying to not worry about weight - check how few pitchers have been close to Manoah's weight and had success past 25 to a significant degree (15+ bWAR). Bumgarner, Sabathia, Zambrano. That's it. And I'm not just talking the last 10 years, but since 1871. Extra large pitchers lasting is a new thing. David Wells was big, but listed as 6'3" 190 lbs (which I suspect was very early in his career, by the end he was much heavier). Early photos of Wells don't look like a guy over 200lbs as he was later on. The weight does affect ones knees as anyone who is over 230 lbs will tell you (ahem). Manoah and Vlad and Kirk will all need to work out a LOT to stay in shape as they age. The stats don't lie - guys that big rarely age well and counting on Vlad past 35 or Manoah past 32 is a massive risk. For Bo you rarely get shortstops over 170 lbs.

According to the Lahman database there have been 3184 guys who have played SS in the majors (136 played 1000+ games at SS - 4.3%), of those 1869 were 170+ lbs (90 playing 1000+ games - 4.8%), 1098 180+ (47 playing 1000+ games - 4.3%), 548 190+ (26 playing 1000+ games - 4.7%). So in baseball history only 26 guys have weighed 190+ lbs and played SS for 1000+ games. Any long term deal assumes Bo would play at least that many or you need to start discounting for games at other positions. I do find it interesting that the % who made it to 1000+ games at SS stayed fairly even regardless of weight though. Who knew? Growing up in the 70's/80's thin fast shortstops were all the rage with Cal Ripken the exception (can see why Earl Weaver was seen as a great manager as he had the guts to put Ripken at SS despite the thought at the time that he was too big for it).

I'm sure the Jays do studies like this, and ones based on height-weight and check how well guys in the same shape as their big 3 have done in other sports too. Look for warning signs and study why the exceptions (like CC) exist. Did he do something different in training than others? Did he use different pitches? Did he shift how he did things as he aged and how quickly? Did others do the same and just didn't have the same luck/skill? I see using ERA+ as an interesting way to study it too, but my gut says body type is a far better indicator of longevity than raw effectiveness at 24. I'll have to look at doing a followup sometime using other methods (OPS+, ERA+ for example, or WAR or something else). I listed the relievers with Manoah just to show how rare it is for a guy his size to be around and effective pre-25.

FYI: Valenzuela is listed at 180 lbs (he did gain a lot of weight after his great rookie year as I recall which might explain why he only had 5.3 bWAR post 26 which no one saw coming at the time, after a 5.5 both at 24 and 25), while Reuschel is at 215 and he also gained as he went (missed age 33 season but from 34-end he added 18.4 bWAR despite only 113 IP for ages 34/35 - he was fun to watch pitch).
uglyone - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 02:33 PM EST (#426316) #
The conceit here is that they would put that money to better use elsewhere on the roster, rather than just pocket the savings.

And what does longterm mean anyways?

we keep signing 33-34 year olds to healthy 3-4 year deals. is that better than signing 30yr olds to 7yr deals?
dalimon5 - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 03:08 PM EST (#426317) #
Who are these 33/34 year olds getting signed to their 36-38 aged seasons?

Chris Bassitt
Hyun-Jin Ryu


Anybody else other than these two over the past 4 years? Are these two three and four year deals the best comparables you have for record breaking deals we are likely talking about for Vlad and Bo?
John Northey - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 03:40 PM EST (#426318) #
In the end it is all about risk. Ryu was good for half his contract. This is a guy who was 2nd in Cy voting the year before he came and 3rd the first year here. So basically he cost $40 mil per year when you factor in the 2 lost years (2022/23). That is the risk when you sign long term deals. Suppose SF signed Bumgarner to a 10 year deal at $20 per back in the winter of 14/15 (same as signing Manoah to one today) - they'd have gotten 18.9 bWAR from a guy who had produced 14.4 to that point with Cy votes in 3 seasons, and 4 straight 200+ IP seasons (which Manoah has yet to do once) plus been a playoff MVP in the WS and NLCS. IE: he was a far better bet at that time to be more than we hope Manoah would be. But at $200 mil for a decade they'd have overpaid unless he does really well the next 2 years (0.2 bWAR the past 3 years for comparison). And that is one of the better cases for Manoah going forward. Signing a 2-4 year deal with a 33 year old is risky, but a 10 year deal at 24/25 is far more risky - more years where an injury can occur, a player can get lazy, a rule change cuts their value, etc.

I hope Manoah, Vlad, and Bo all outdo the guys I compared them to, but if I ran the Jays no way I'd risk $200+ million on Manoah. The odds are just not in their favor of it being a profitable strategy - as much as I want him to be a career Blue Jay. Bo & Vlad might work out, but again odds are against it. In 5+ years I suspect many of the 10+ year deals we've seen these past few years will be looking very bad. The Mets have an ego based owner who can write off hundreds of millions without harm to his lifestyle, but few teams operate that way. The Jays are a corporate team which plans on making money year in/year out. Fans here have shown that a winner will maximize revenue streams in multiple areas (cable, stadium, internet, good will for Rogers which they desperately need, etc.) thus we should see a top 10 payroll going forward but I doubt we'll ever see the Jays at #1 or even #3 again (NYM, NYY, LAD will normally be in those slots). The Tigers are a slightly smaller market than Toronto but tried spending beyond their means for a bit as their owner was dying - thus now they are paying a fortune for Miguel Cabrera as he plays sub-replacement level ball.

The more I think about it the more I want the Jays to invest heavily in the minors - building up better training and better scouting so they can keep a good flow of players. Try to sign guys like Vlad and Bo but not to 10+ year deals unless it somehow makes sense (not easy). I strongly suspect the Jays have made it clear to Vlad that he needs to do more English TV interviews (sans translator) to help increase his value in the local market, and that they need him in more Spanish language advertising locally. Bo they should be making far more use of that way too. If they want the 10+ year deals they need to be able to sell the Jays as a product locally and nationwide, maybe world-wide. Make the Jays the team kids in the Dominican dream of playing for - as it was in the 80's with Bell & Fernandez here. It makes it easier to sign the kids in theory (ties go to the Jays, not other teams).
Mike Green - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 04:26 PM EST (#426319) #
Subjectively, I think that Manoah is going to have the best career of the three of them, and he's certainly not going to be getting the biggest contract.  And may get about 1/2 of what Vladdy gets. 

If Manoah stays healthy, he's going to earn $60 million in arbitration. I'd happily pay him out that money and $30 million a year for 3 more years.  He'd be worth more than that if he does stay healthy but he's getting the guarantee of good arb salaries whether or not he gets injured.  It amounts to a bet that he'll be worth 9 WAR or more during his age 30-32 seasons.  I'd take it. 
JohnL - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 06:34 PM EST (#426320) #
Regarding grjas's concern about long-term contracts, and "boat anchors" in a few years:

The NYT had an article last month about the trend for 10+ year contracts (especially for players getting on in age). When it was written there had been 24 contracts of at least 10 years in history (13 FAs, 11 extensions.) Only one of the players has ever stayed with the signing team for the full 10, and lots of disappointing performances.

- Jeter was the 10 year guy, and was a star every year.
- Joey Votto is now entering his 10th year.
- Winfield was traded after 9, but continued performing even after the 10 years (as we remember!)

- Some notable declines (in various ways) including Pujols & A-Rod (who'd signed 2 10 year deals.)
- “Giancarlo Stanton has come of age, and he’s going to be here a long time,” - then Marlins’ owner Loria 3 years before Stanton was traded.

Interesting story: the first player to get a 10 year contract was 26 year old pitcher Wayne Garland, who signed with Cleveland in 1976. He'd been seeking 5 years/$1million, and got 10/$2.3M. He phoned his mother:

Garland: “I didn’t get the million dollars.”
Mom: “You’re not worth it."
G: “I got two million dollars and 10 years.”
Mom repeated the sentiment.
G, now: “She spoke the truth. She put it plain and simple.”

He went 13-19, 3.60 over 282 innings his first season, then tore his rotator next spring, and never pitched another full season; released in 1982. Despite the millions, when the 1981 strike happened, he took a job pumping gas. “I wasn’t ashamed to be seen pumping gas and wiping windshields.” He coached for a couple of teams in the 90s, but hasn't watched a baseball game in 20 years. When told about Correa's SF contract, he said "God bless him."

Article: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/12/16/sports/baseball/carlos-correa-giants-contract.html
Katie - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 07:26 PM EST (#426321) #
I side with Mike over John on this one (specifically, in reference to John's "no way I'd sign Manoah" comment).

I think it just comes down to weighing Manoah's weight, and the risks associated with it, differently. I think there are just too many positive indicators in his performance for me to view that as a significant detriment for me not to want to proceed with getting an 8-9-year deal done, if it can be done at roughly the numbers Mike is quoting.

Pitchers are a big injury risk and this could turn into a situation where an injury impedes his effectiveness. However, I think there's a very good chance Manoah is a very effective pitcher in his early 30's still and there is value in retaining star-level players, which is looking increasingly less likely with Bo and Vlad, frankly.
John Northey - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 08:01 PM EST (#426322) #
At $150 mil for 10 years you are just hoping Manoah is at the Bumgarner/Zambrano level which isn't unreasonable. Hoping for the best case (Sabathia) is OK, but betting millions on it isn't. Hitters tend to age better than pitchers with obvious exceptions (none more extreme than Nolan Ryan going until 46). If a team has studies showing that pitchers are more likely now to last then great, but most comparisons I found were guys who were active in the past decade or so, not 50-100 years ago (I really thought I'd hit a couple of guys from way back when for weight/pitching pre 25 but didn't).
dalimon5 - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 08:30 PM EST (#426323) #
He doesn't have enough velocity to make me comfortable to sign him for anything past 6 or 7 years. If he's at 94 on his fastball now, where will that be at the end of the deal and would that be modulation enough to keep his slider elite?
greenfrog - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 09:41 PM EST (#426325) #
Lance Lynn is an interesting comp for Manoah, as Magpie mentioned. With the exception of his 2022 season, his FB average velo has actually been *higher* in his 30s than it was in his 20s. His age- 32 and 34 seasons have been his best in the majors so far.

Nola is another successful RH starter whose velo (and K rates) increased after his first few seasons in the majors.

Manoah has the potential to be one of the best Jays starting pitchers ever. But the future is a garden of forking paths (to quote Jorge Luis Borges).
John Northey - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 09:50 PM EST (#426326) #
Thinking about it - what are the best Jays ever who came up and if they were signed to 10 year deals at 24/25 would it have been a good idea?
  • Dave Stieb: pre 25 18.4 bWAR, 25-end 38.2, better than I expected - most from 25-32 (then hurt and mostly ineffective).
  • Roy Halladay: pre 25 97 ERA+, 25-36 138 ERA+ 62.2 bWAR, easily worth it even with the last 2 years being negative WAR's
  • Jimmy Key: 25-34 36.3 bWAR - another Gillick mistake thinking he was washed up after his age 31 season, but had 19.3 bWAR left.
  • David Wells: dumbest release ever by Gillick, came up at 24 and was in the pen for all but 2 games in his first 3 seasons, at 29 he got into battles with Gaston over various stuff and was released before his age 30 season despite a 108 lifetime ERA+ at the time. From 25-end he was 53.2 bWAR, from 25-34 25.0 bWAR. 35-44 28.2 bWAR Weird career for a weird player.
  • Pat Hentgen: First Cy Young winner as a Jay, 3.4 bWAR pre 25, 29.6 the rest of the way (to age 35, negative his last year). A lot better than I remembered.
  • Juan Guzman: came up at 24, was 'wow', 21.3 bWAR from 25-33 (had a quick end, just 1 games in his final year after signing for 2 years $12 million (poor Tampa - hehe).
  • Jim Clancy: our first 'ace' with 7.9 WAR pre 25, then 12.8 from 25-35. Last good year was age 31. Then Houston signed him for a lot at the time. Negative WAR from then on.
Of course, this is a very limited list. Just going from memory for guys who came up as Jays and if remembered odds are they were very good. Lots of guys came up with promise but flopped - Todd Stottlemyre, Luis Leal, Ricky Romero, Shaun Marcum to name a few. Long term deals for any of them would've been an ugly waste of money.
uglyone - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 10:36 PM EST (#426327) #
"Who are these 33/34 year olds getting signed to their 36-38 aged seasons?"

Maybe put it this way - the danger of long contracts is paying guys for mid to late 30s years.

Here's our remaining commitments to those years:

* Springer ($30) 33 34 35 36
* Bassitt ($21) 34 35 36
* Gausman ($22) 33 34 35
* Merrifield ($5) 34 35
* Berrios ($19) 33 34
* Ryu ($20) 36
* Belt ($9) 35
* Bass ($3) 35
* Kiermaier ($9) 33
* Kikuchi ($12) 33


And most of those guys we're paying without benefitting from their younger better years.

Have we really avoided any danger by not signing longer deals? And aren't many of these deals here much much riskier than handing out long deals to 25yr olds?


Magpie - Sunday, January 22 2023 @ 11:35 PM EST (#426328) #
The weight does affect ones knees as anyone who is over 230 lbs will tell you

Lance Lynn, of course, hurt his knee last April, needed surgery, and was out of the rotation until mid-June.

Lynn doesn't look 6-5, 270, but then all pitchers look roughly the same size, standing out there in the middle of the field all by themselves.
Leaside Cowboy - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 12:20 AM EST (#426330) #
#
50 - Frank Francisco - listed 6 ' 2 " - 250 lbs.
50 - Joey Hamilton - listed 6 ' 4 " - 220 lbs.
50 - Tom Henke - listed 6 ' 5 " - 215 lbs.
52 - B.J. Ryan - listed 6 ' 6 " - 230 lbs.
63 - Kevin Gregg - listed 6 ' 6 " - 245 lbs.

Big numbers. Closers can be fat.
bpoz - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 07:59 AM EST (#426331) #
One of Shapiros philosophies is "win so that next year the budget is good". Maybe that means "not reduced".

Definitely willing to acquire mid 30 aged players like KK, Belt, Merrifield etc... who are on very short term deals. They don't hurt the payroll budget "long term".

The 2023 budget is very expensive. A bad 2023 gets the budget reduced most likely. A good season maybe does not increase the budget by much but may actually reduce it due to expiring contracts. Looks like the $50 mil coming off the books for 2023 is not being paid to star players.

Depending how Chapman plays this year determines if he gets a QO. If injured or not playing well enough might mean no QO.

dalimon5 - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 08:42 AM EST (#426332) #
Ugly, your list is basically a bunch of guys who aren't signed to the type of long term contract we're talking about. You're hsing 4 year or less contracts and cheap contracts to try to argue that this FO is already signing mid 30 players to long deals. You even use Springer and Berrios' last years of their contracts as an argument while ignoring their prime or younger years.

There's no argument to signing a 25 year old as if it's better than mid 30 year old players when a) your 25 year old is going to be super expensive and b) you will likely need to sign him to age 33,34,35.

And Whit Merrifield as an example of a middling 30 something signing? They acquired him via trade, paid small portion of his large salary then have him for cheap the next year.

Your argument is essentially to sign Blad or Bo because they are good and young right now. Just say that. I don't think anyone can deny that, it's just the anchor part of the deals people are afraid of as it can undo the earlier success.
mathesond - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 09:49 AM EST (#426333) #
"it's just the anchor part of the deals people are afraid of as it can undo the earlier success."

How so? If the team won a WS during the early years, would it be taken away once salary exceeds production?
bpoz - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 10:40 AM EST (#426335) #
I agree with dalimon5 about late years undoing present and future success.

The contracts of Tulo & Martin harmed 2018, 19 and possibly 20 IMO. Donaldson also got paid a lot in 2018. All 3 helped in the 2015 and 16 success.

Miggy in Detroit is a current example an underperforming player getting paid a lot.
dalimon5 - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 11:20 AM EST (#426336) #
"How so? If the team won a WS during the early years, would it be taken away once salary exceeds production?"

It's very simple. If the team wins a world series then it becomes a debate, but that is not the expectation when making these deals. You need to expect that you won't win the World Series if trying to use that as justification for the bad part of a deall or money being wasted.

It's also not everyone that wants a World Series and nothing else. I would much rather have an entertainment experience where it is engaging and competitive year after year, not "wow it was awesome in 2023 and that made it worthwhile for these crappy years from 2028 - 2035." I guess if my plan was to stop watching or investing in the product after a World Series that would be a good plan, but since I plan to follow the team yearly and invest money yearly I have to conclude that I'd prefer to be entertained every year with a chance at a World Series vs having one world series or bust.

John Northey - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 11:48 AM EST (#426337) #
One could argue 1994-2014 was the price of the 2 WS wins in 92/93. As they say, banner fly forever. But would you be OK with the Jays winning again then sucking for 20 years again? A title is a once every 30 years thing (random odds, but it can be a LOT rarer due to some teams dominating it - see the Cubs for a 100+ years for an extreme example). For an example of how much some want to win this Red Sox ad is priceless - fake I'm sure but fun. Seeing the Raptors win it all a few years ago was fantastic - saw it with my teenager at home and we were cheering big time, rarely care about basketball otherwise. Titles are big, but nothing can guarantee one. Just ask the Rangers-Brewers-Padres-Mariners-Rockies-Rays (never won), Cleveland (74 years and counting), etc. Pirates are up to 43 years with no end in sight.

The best way to have a shot is to keep making it into the playoffs. To build a consistent winner. MLB isn't the NBA where 1 player can change everything (otherwise the Jays would've made it with Halladay, Clemens, Delgado, etc. on the team). Signing a guy to a 10+ year deal, no matter how good he is, won't lock anything up - just ask the Angels who haven't won a single playoff game since Trout arrived in 2011 (swept in 2014), and haven't done anything with Trout and Ohtani.

Next winter will be very interesting with Ohtani being a free agent - assuming he doesn't sign an extension since he wants to go to the playoffs. Should the Jays take that roughly $50 mil coming off the books this winter and blow it on him? He'd replace Belt at DH and whoever is #5 in the rotation (but with a #1 quality guy).
bpoz - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 11:50 AM EST (#426338) #
Again not arguing but I think many believe the WS winner is the team that gets hot and lucky during the playoffs.

Atlanta 2021, Philly 2022 but no WS, Washington 2019. Nobody has to believe what I said.

If the Jays win the WS in 2023 I fantasize that Belt pinch hits a WS winning Hr. I remember Kirk Gibson doing that for LAD and then limping around the bases. I can't remember his career after that great hit. The pitcher Orel H was most valuable IMO but Gibson was the most dramatic.
uglyone - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 12:04 PM EST (#426340) #
"One could argue 1994-2014 was the price of the 2 WS wins in 92/93"

I don't think being cheap for 20 years was the price of spending more than anyone to win championships.
uglyone - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 12:06 PM EST (#426341) #
"It's very simple. If the team wins a world series then it becomes a debate, but that is not the expectation when making these deals."

I'll take being a legit favorite for years on end, even if the team happens to get unlucky to never win one.

92-93 - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 12:16 PM EST (#426342) #
There's an added cost to giving Manoah the 8/150 that Mike Green suggests - it comes with a 3.75MM luxury tax bill this year, and it likely means the Jays are over the CBT during the Guerrero/Bichette contention window which means higher % penalties in 2024/2025. This is because it would bump Manoah's luxury tax AAV figure from 700K to around 19MM, even if they are still only paying him a couple of million this season. A Guerrero extension might be more likely because of luxury tax implications.
John Northey - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 12:25 PM EST (#426344) #
Heh. Good point uglyone - the Jays were very cheap once Gillick left. But also run very poorly by Ash then JPR. Ash was handed a WS champion (he pretty much took over in 1994, as Gillick slowly handed over control) which had 6 top 100 prospects (Alex Gonzalez and Delgado were top 5, Jose Silva #10 plus Shawn Green, D.J. Boston, and Paul Spoljaric) In the system also was Shannon Stewart and Chris Carpenter plus he drafted Roy Halladay. I mean, the Jays were loaded in the majors and minors. There was no reason for the 20 years of playoff draught after that. None. Jays heading into 1995 were ranked #3 for organization talent. But horrid trades, poor choices in free agency/who to sign led to the disasters that came. Plus poor drafting beyond the first round and screwing over Epy Guerrero (who provided a nice pipeline to the Jays from the Dominican).

As to cheap, the Jays weren't always cheap during that stretch, setting a record for biggest deal ever for Roger Clemens, signing Delgado to a massive deal (that they regretted as the budget was cut shortly after). The Jays should've been a powerhouse in the 90's, not just to 1993. Ah well. We did get those 2 magical years at the end of a decade of excellence. But without those WS wins it would've felt a lot more empty imo.
bpoz - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 01:19 PM EST (#426346) #
Thanks for the history lesson John N. I always like discussing that in the off season.

A Gonzales, Green and Delgado arrived soon enough and contributed. I think Ash thought Alomar was going to be too expensive. Olerud was traded to free 1B for Carter I think. I don't know why Cone was traded, either rebuild or did not want to pay. Yet Beeston got Clemens for a big contract. A Rios and T Batista were lost somehow. Green demanding a trade was a tough blow.

Gonzales, Green, Delgado and S Stewart was a rebuild I suppose. Add in Carpenter and Halladay. Carpenter got hurt and Richardi released him.

The overlap was confusing. Guzman, Hentgen, Clemens. Replace Clemens with Wells. Did we have a bullpen? Something went wrong. Also Gaston was let go.
John Northey - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 02:24 PM EST (#426348) #
It was a mess back then. Dumping Olerud (and paying his contract) was the biggest dumb move imo. It was so Delgado could be at 1B everyday and DH would be open for Carter when he wasn't in the OF. Carter was the leftover from 1993 that cost the mid-90's Jays the most. Alomar was a miscalculation by Ash - he thought the owners meant it when they said pay would go down post 1994, thus he didn't sign Alomar to a long term deal pre-1994. Oops. By mid 1995 Alomar was sick of losing and was happy to leave as a free agent. Rios was released due to his big contract - but the 2 previous years he was a 5+ WAR player, so dumping him mid-way through a 1.5 WAR year seems odd now, but at the time it made sense. 6.9 bWAR left in him after that for around $60 million. A good deal by today's standards but by 2009 prices it wasn't.

Wells & Rios were example A for why signing your young kids to long term deals doesn't always work out. JPR and AA found ways out of those bad deals in the end (how AA got anything of value for Wells is beyond me). It'd be interesting to dig into baseball history since 1995 and see how many of those deals for kids worked out (Cleveland did a stack of them around that time and they worked well for Albert Belle, Kenny Lofton, and others). SD seemed to do well with Fernando Tatis Jr. but now he has missed a full season and is owed over $300 million through his age 35 season - if he doesn't come back at 100% that could be very ugly for SD, especially since Tatis doesn't want to move to LF from SS and still insists he is a shortstop.
bpoz - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 04:56 PM EST (#426349) #
Regarding Wells I will Cherry pick to make MY case that I knew he could be moved.

In 2010 31 Hr 88rbi .273 Avg. I always valued Hrs so 30 is always great. He was traded to LAA.

2007 just 16Hr. 2008 only 20 Hr but .300 Avg which is another amazing type number. 2009 looked bad only 15 Hr.

I always had too much faith that our players would over perform. Most often they would not but that never dampened my hopes. So I expected a 30 Hr year and Wells delivered. AA was smart to jump on that. And AA was definitely rebuilding.
SK in NJ - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 05:07 PM EST (#426350) #
I feel like the Jays and Guerrero will end up working something out eventually. He has said in the past that he is open to an extension and there has never been an issue with him agreeing to contract terms like there has been with Bichette. With his 2023 salary taken care of, they could hypothetically sign him to an extension before the season and for luxury tax purposes can say the extension begins in 2024 so that it doesn't impact 2023 numbers (which I believe is what Boston did with Devers). As 92-93 mentioned, extensions will look at AAV, not salary in a given year, so Vlad's 2024 AAV vs. the AAV he'd get in a long-term extension are likely close enough to not have it impact the team too much from a CBT standpoint. He's the guy it makes sense to extend right now. Whether he and the team can come to a reasonable compromise is the question. The FO might want to wait to see if he can return to 2021 Vlad before committing so many years to him, but in that scenario his price would also go way up. This might be the time to get him on a long term extension with a reasonable AAV ($25M or so).

The fascinating thing about Vlad/Bo is that you could argue both sides (for and against signing them) and neither one would be wrong. Both players are flawed enough to where having pause over long-term extensions would be completely justifiable. Bichette is a poor defensive SS with a rather risky offensive profile, while Guerrero is a much safer bet offensively but is a slow 1B with more average years than great ones so far. It's not an easy decision by any means.

If the teams wants to go year to year with them and see if they can win a World Series in the next 3 years, then I could see the logic in that, but they better hope they can develop some internal replacements by then. A Jeremy Pena equivalent presenting itself by 2026 would certainly make decisions easier.
Mike Green - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 05:43 PM EST (#426351) #
I doubt VGJ is going to sign for 25M AAV unless it is for 15 years years or more. I wouldn't do that.

Jansen is a FA after 2024. It sure would be nice to have him here for 2-3 years after that, and the cost would not likely be prohibitive.
SK in NJ - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 06:13 PM EST (#426352) #
Given his age, I would think any Vlad extension is going to be at least 12 years. A $25M AAV over that length of time is $300M. The more years, the lower the AAV. Hard to say where the reasonable cut off point is for either side. The Jays might look at 12/300 as unreasonable, while Vlad may want more years and/or money than that. Who knows at this point. Either way any Vlad deal would likely mean he's still going to be under contract into the mid-2030's. It's going to be a long deal, if it happens.
John Northey - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 06:20 PM EST (#426353) #
With Jansen the question is would he want to sign an extension knowing his playing time would be split with Kirk, and not to his advantage. For Vlad we have a guy who has been worth 2.1 bWAR-0.6 (2020 - adjusted is 1.62)-6.8-3.7 so far. His only bad year (sub what one would hope for from a regular) was 2020, mainly from nightmare defense at 1B as he learned on the go during that bizarre year. The past 2 years were solid and 'wow', easily worth $20-$30+ million each. 3 WAR = $27-30 mil roughly. Signed to a $25 mil per year 15 year deal you'd have 5 horrid years at the end as he build his final HOF numbers up. But $375 mil over 10 he might be worth in the end, odds are lower but it could happen and the Jays just would be spreading it over 15 instead. My gut says not to go over $300 total for Vlad, but with the way things are going right now that might be too little. Bo, with his defensive issues, could be a bigger risk in the long run - SS for the first 3 years of an extension, then LF after that.
dalimon5 - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 07:04 PM EST (#426354) #
Vlad aint signing for a lower AAV than Devera. You might be able to sign him on a shorter deal of it means he can rejoin free agency at age 30 or you can offer him a long deal with lots of opt outs. Regardless it's going to be more than Devers and very expensive.

Bo better hope he delivers a good offensive season in '23 or I can see the Jyas moving him to 2B the following year.
Magpie - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 07:09 PM EST (#426355) #
I doubt VGJ is going to sign for 25M AAV unless it is for 15 years years or more. I wouldn't do that.

He's represented by Magnus Sports (for the moment, anyway - they often switch to Boras when it's time to get paid.) Best as I can tell, the biggest deal they've done is the very sweet deal Raisel Iglesias got from the Angels (but the Angels have been known to spend somewhat recklessly.)
John Northey - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 08:47 PM EST (#426358) #
Agreed dalimon5 - Devers signed for 11-year extension worth $313 million which puts him 10th all time for total value (via Cot's - they factor in deferments it seems while other sites didn't. Top 10 are...
  1. Mike Trout, $426,500,000 (2019-30)
  2. Mookie Betts, $365,000,000 (2021-32)
  3. Aaron Judge, $360,000,000 (2023-31)
  4. Francisco Lindor, $341,000,000 (2022-31)
  5. Fernando Tatis, $340,000,000 (2021-34)
  6. Bryce Harper, $330,000,000 (2019-31)
  7. Giancarlo Stanton, $325,000,000 (2015-27)
  8. Corey Seager, $325,000,000 (2022-31)
  9. Gerrit Cole, $324,000,000 (2020-28)
  10. Rafael Devers, $313,500,000 (2024-33)
I figure he would see the case for being less than Judge after his 62 home runs despite the age difference. So $315-$360 is the range I figure he'll be after. My 15 year $375 mil idea ($25 per for 15 years) would work well for him, but would the league allow it (signed to age 39 if in effect starting next year)? And would it be a good deal for the Jays? You'd need 38 WAR for the deal to break even over those 15 years - basically hoping for a Jim Rice type career or better.
Magpie - Monday, January 23 2023 @ 10:33 PM EST (#426359) #
Bo better hope he delivers a good offensive season in '23 or I can see the Jyas moving him to 2B the following year.

Oh, I hope not. It always depresses me when the team does stupid things.
Mike Green - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 10:14 AM EST (#426363) #
My 15 year $375 mil idea ($25 per for 15 years) would work well for him, but would the league allow it (signed to age 39 if in effect starting next year)? And would it be a good deal for the Jays? You'd need 38 WAR for the deal to break even over those 15 years - basically hoping for a Jim Rice type career or better.

Nope.  The club has Guerrero Jr. for his age 24-26 seasons at a discounted rate.  Let's say that he delivers an average of 5 WAR/year over the next 3 years (which is essentially what the projection systems suggest).  That would be 15 WAR, on top of the 9 fWAR and 13 bWAR he has amassed to date).  $25 million is a fair guess of his average arbitration salary for his age 25/26 seasons.  So, what you are purchasing is in fact a 13 year, $325M contract for age 27-39.  You need about 32 WAR to make it a break even on a straight dollar basis which would make you need him to be a 60 WAR player over his career.  However,  $25M won't be $25M in 10 years, let alone 15.  How much do you discount future salary? Very good question.  If someone tells me that they know what the average inflation rate generally (or the baseball salary inflation rate) will be over the next 10 years, I would respond that I know what the weather will be 10 months from today.  Simple calculations: in the 15th year, if the average inflation rate is 3%, the present value of $25M would be $16M.  But, if the average inflation rate is 5%, it would be $12M. 

Jim Rice delivered 23 WAR from age 27 on, and that would not be enough to make it work unless inflation was quite a bit higher than 5%.   Eddie Murray delivered 44 WAR from age 27 on, and that would be more than enough to make it work.  I think Rice's career from age 27 is probably a reasonable expectation of what Guerrero Jr. will deliver.  Guerrero Jr. is a better hitter, but not as good an athlete. 
Glevin - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 11:41 AM EST (#426365) #
I think long-term deal make sense when they make sense. You can't be sentimental but make the best decision for the club. The Cardinals who are a almost always a well-run team, didn't pay up for Pujols which was a very tough decision but the right one for the club. The Tigers who are one of the worst run teams in baseball, extended Miggy to a terrible deal. I'd rather keep players if possible but if it doesn't make sense, you need to be able to just move on.
John Northey - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 12:49 PM EST (#426366) #
Excellent points Glevin and Mike Green. After doing all that analysis up top, I then got caught with emotion on the $375 million idea. The key thing for the Jays is to stay unemotional and to pick what they feel makes sense and to not go beyond that. Basically, figure out what Vlad should be worth going forward and make a 5 year offer, and have a figure in mind for a 10+ year one as well (jumping risk but also locking in any potential gains). We all saw how ugly it got for LAA with Pujols and Detroit with Miggy. If a team can do well enough scouting and developing kids then the 6 years of control should be fine - if you lose a player after that you are only losing the decline years in most cases. Vlad coming up at 20 means he goes to free agency fairly young which could be a goldmine for him, but the Jays need to be certain they aren't buying fools gold.
uglyone - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 12:57 PM EST (#426367) #
Ever notice how the majority of the teams that sign these kinds of deals end up being really good most of the time, and good enough that they maintain fan interest, making it a value proposition regardless of what happens?

and forget the inflation rate - the more important rate is the increase in Franchise Values over that time, which I'd say is much greater than the regular old inflation rate.
bpoz - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 01:43 PM EST (#426368) #
The Cardinals are well run. They signed Y Molina and Pujols as kids and picked up C Carpenter from the Jays. All 3 had nice long careers for them. Trading Rasmus to the Jays also worked out well.
Mike Green - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 02:06 PM EST (#426369) #
The Cardinals signed Pujols to an excellent long-term contract early on. They refused to pay him what he was asking for at the time of his second contract.

Pujols was a much, much better player.
85bluejay - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 02:14 PM EST (#426370) #
Sometimes luck plays a part - The Cardinals offered Pujols 10/215 and were lucky that the desperate Angels offered 10/240.
Magpie - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 02:27 PM EST (#426371) #
I would respond that I know what the weather will be 10 months from today.

OK, I'll go first. Wednesday 25 October 2023 - high of 10 degrees, mix of sun and cloud, dropping to 6 degrees overnight.

Do not ask me about inflation.
Mike Green - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 03:09 PM EST (#426374) #
October 25,2023 weather forecast- 12 degrees and sunny during the day, but a cold front rolls in at 6 pm, and it's 2 degrees outside when they throw out the first pitch.
92-93 - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 03:36 PM EST (#426376) #
https://fred.stlouisfed.org/series/T10YIE
Mike Green - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 04:10 PM EST (#426377) #
Previous ten year patterns for inflation are interesting, but far from the last word.  Many sources warn of the potential for a long period of high inflation, and many sources believe that inflation rates will moderate shortly.  You can go back over the last 100 years, and see periods of high inflation and periods of low inflation. 
92-93 - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 04:55 PM EST (#426379) #
That chart is showing you inflation expectations for 10 years out. There have been periods of high and low inflation over the last 100 years, but future expectations don't fluctuate as much (or at least haven't in the last 2+ decades).
uglyone - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 05:17 PM EST (#426381) #
Note that the average MLB franchise value is up 350% over the last 10 years, and pretty much doubled over the life of Price's contract.
dalimon5 - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 06:12 PM EST (#426382) #
Average values are up so lets use that as justification for issuing out massive contracts that may or may not hamper our ability to field a competitive team in the future. Wait! We can just be one of those teams that spends insane amounts of dollars above the tax, and overpay players. We're wasting money and blowing it but who cares because the value of our team is up.

Value doesn't mean chicken scrub until someone pays for that value. In business you learn that value is not the same as profit. You can lose a ton of money every year and still be valued very highly. Alternatively you can make money every year and be valued very poorly.

Using values is a sucker's game for making business decisions involving large sums of money.
uglyone - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 07:03 PM EST (#426383) #
"We're wasting money and blowing it but who cares because the value of our team is up."


...yes?
Magpie - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 07:34 PM EST (#426384) #
Note that the average MLB franchise value is up 350% over the last 10 years

I'm curious - what does that mean? Does it refer to overall value, or to increase in value? (Let me try to make this clearer!)

Does it mean that in 2013, the total value of the 30 MLB franchises was $20 million and now the total value is $70 million?

Or does it mean that ten franchises didn't increase in value whatsoever, ten franchises increased in value by 350%, and ten franchises increased in value by 700% (obviously a grotesque exaggeration to try to clarify the question.)

I'm not even sure that the distinction matters, but I think it might. The Yankees were and are worth so much more than the Pirates, say, that they wouldn't need to increase their value by 350% to lift the average value increase of everybody, Pirates included.
uglyone - Tuesday, January 24 2023 @ 07:46 PM EST (#426385) #
Well it means that the Blue Jays have increased their franchise value 430% from 2012 to 2022, or 313% from 2013 to 2022, whichever one you prefer as the 10yr measure.
bpoz - Wednesday, January 25 2023 @ 06:58 AM EST (#426387) #
It seems most of the increase to the Blue Jays team has occurred on Shapiro's watch. Which of course makes sense.
Magpie - Wednesday, January 25 2023 @ 10:08 AM EST (#426391) #
Well it means

I think I was wondering whether it was the average increase of individual franchises or the overall increase of the collective.

Revenue increase might be more significant, although everyone has a powerful motivation to understate those as much as possible.
uglyone - Wednesday, January 25 2023 @ 10:08 AM EST (#426392) #
well...

+267% in 5yrs under AA

+205% in 7yrs under Shapiro


but really, those just mirror league average for the most part. probably not much to do with the performance of the team in particular.
scottt - Wednesday, January 25 2023 @ 10:45 AM EST (#426393) #
The whole point is to have a bunch of productive players during their 6/7 years of control.
It's not to extend them to another 10 years after that or to trade them early before they leave due to free agency.

The right time to move on from a player is when you have a younger player ready to take his spot.

They should have someone ready to play 3B next year, shortstop in 3 years.
I don't see anyone being able to replace Vladdy.

John Northey - Wednesday, January 25 2023 @ 02:54 PM EST (#426396) #
The goal has to be to make a team sustainable long term - 90+ wins = significant profits for the Jays based on past attendance/tv ratings (I did an article years ago on it and found 90 was the magic number to shift things, 70's and 80's for wins were 'meh', less a disaster). Jay fans are just wanting hope. So that is what the current crew running the team is shooting for (90-100 wins per year) vs the past ones (85-95 and almost always on the sub 90 side). It costs more to stay at that 90+ level than the 85+, 5 wins aren't cheap (roughly $40-$50 mil in payroll) but to keep the house full and TV ratings high it is needed, or at least the perception that they will be there in the end is needed.

So what is the most cost-efficient way? Getting young players before they are free agents, and having a steady stream of them but having enough ML'ers so the kids aren't tossed into the deep end ala Vlad/Bo/Biggio in 2019 but more like how Kirk was broken in over a few years (9-60-139 games in his first 3 ML seasons). Of course, that 60 was less than planned due to injuries (far from ideal). I suspect we'll see Addison Barger and Orelvis Martinez at some point this year if they look nearly ready in order to start the process. Often in a first ML shot a guy faces adversity and gets an idea of what they need to do to get back up and stay up.

For 2024 and beyond we see 3B opening up (Chapman most likely going elsewhere as he'll get a stupid offer from someone I'm sure) with SS and 2B both having their own issues (Bo wanting more than the Jays will offer, and not being strong enough on defense to be worth what he wants, 2B being a mix of 3 guys). The problem is the Jays have a ton of SS's in the system but most if not all are playing a lot at 3B and/or 2B suggesting they aren't 'wow' on defense. Less than 'wow' means they might be no better than Bo defensively and odds are low of them being up to Bo's level on offense. After 2025 a lot opens up potentially closing this competitive window, but the Jays won't want that to close. In 2026 they will be paying over $60 mil to 3 guys (Gausman, Berrios, Springer) with Varsho in his final year pre-free agency, and the same for Espinal and Kirk. Lots to plan around. Thus why every IFA signing is important right now (kids signed now won't be ready for at least 5 years most likely, so for 2028, but will be good trade pieces potentially before then) but was even more important the last few years. The draft this year is important for a quick refill for 2026 (college kids could be ready that fast) and how the Jays handle the draft will be a sign of how they feel about their lower minors right now and how well it'll fill the majors in 2025/26 and beyond. If they draft high school kids then they probably feel good about it, if they draft college kids who are nearly set then odds are they don't feel good about the minors at the moment.
bpoz - Wednesday, January 25 2023 @ 05:11 PM EST (#426397) #
Very good analysis John. That 2026 year is important. Last year for Gausman & Springer.

I feel a long run is the aim. The other possibility is a short rebuild. Our current rebuild was short because we spent money on Ryu and Springer. Then there were the lucky moves Semiem & Ray and the unlucky moves Roark and C Anderson.
Nigel - Wednesday, January 25 2023 @ 06:02 PM EST (#426398) #
The goal of a consistent winner is laudable. However, there are zero examples of teams who achieve that without spending their way to achieving that. The closest mid/small market team to achieving that is Cleveland and they have a massive systemic advantage of playing in the AL Central. There is nothing in MLB close to payroll for a correlation to winning. Every team not named the Yankees and Dodgers (your list of payroll behemoths might have one or two other names on it but definitely not the Jays) generally behaves according to their place on the win curve (i.e. go all in and trade prospects near the peak, with the acceptance of the consequences (i.e. a rebuild) at some later date).
scottt - Wednesday, January 25 2023 @ 06:36 PM EST (#426399) #
Jimenez looks pretty good defensively. It's the hitting that's highly questionable.

There's always the option of signing more free agents or trading for a guy like Franco--I really don't see Tampa sending him here, no.

John Northey - Wednesday, January 25 2023 @ 08:06 PM EST (#426400) #
Well, the ultimate for no rebuild is the Cardinals. Since the wild card era started in 1994 the longest they have been out of the playoffs is 3 years in a row. Their last sub 500 season was 2007 (78 wins), their last 90+ loss season was 1990. So since they last lost 90 they have won the World Series 3 times and 4 times had 100+ wins (yet never won it all in a year they won 100+, but did win it all once when they won just 83). Now that is avoiding full rebuilds I'd say. Just 4 times in their history have they lost 100, last time was 1908. Only 3 times since Ruth was only a pitcher have they lost 90+ (1990-1978-1976).

The Jays have avoided full rebuilds quite nicely also - just 2 90+ loss seasons since 1980 (well, 1981 would've been if not for the strike) - 2004 and 2019. Same for the Yankees (1990-1991 their only 90+ loss seasons since before Bob Gibson had a 1.12 ERA one year).

Not everyone needs to do a Houston and go 4 straight horrid years in a row to get good. (2011-14 they lost 90+, 3 times 106+) or a KC - 3 of the past 5 years 97+ losses or a Pittsburgh (2 straight 100+ loss seasons and it'd have been 3 if 2020 was a full year) - poor Derek Shelton, manager for all 3 of those years.
greenfrog - Wednesday, January 25 2023 @ 09:13 PM EST (#426401) #
The expanded playoffs might make it easier to be a consistent contender. Some years you aim to win your division, other years you aim for a WC spot, and when you’re really bad you focus on rebuilding. With a robust payroll and a competent front office, the Jays should be able to contend for at least a WC spot the majority of the time (especially with a balanced schedule).
Mike Green - Thursday, January 26 2023 @ 10:28 AM EST (#426402) #
The Tampa Bay Rays have gone 1267-1062 (.544 WP) during 2008-22.  They have won the division 4 times, made the playoffs 8 times and won 2 pennants.  During that time, they did have a 4 year period where they were not a contender 2014-17 but they didn't tank- finishing at 80-82 two of those years and 77-85 with a near-even run differential another year. 

That seems like a fair target.  The Rays have exceptional management, but a payroll that has been and is likely to continue to be about 1/2 of the Blue Jays payroll. 
JohnL - Thursday, January 26 2023 @ 10:29 AM EST (#426403) #
One long-term deal that worked out pretty well was signed 45 years ago today. Gretzky signed a 21-year “personal services” contract with Peter Pocklington on his 18th birthday. (And he did, in fact, play 21 more years.)

One account of that day:
https://www.coppernblue.com/2010/1/26/1270163/happy-birthday-wayne-the-21-year
bpoz - Thursday, January 26 2023 @ 10:31 AM EST (#426404) #
Our rebuild started at the 2018 trade deadline. For the shortened 2020 season our winning % translated to 86 wins, Houston 78 wins but had faith in the team the way it was constructed.

2020 was a weird year. In 2019 Houston won 107 games. 95 in 2021.

The current playoff format favors all teams. In 2022 6 teams in the AL Baltimore 83 wins down to Texas 68 wins have made various moves (some very expensive) to contend in 2023. By the AS break and trade deadline definite results will be available for analysis.

It seems obvious to me that some teams will make 1) "Go for it trades". 2) "Just get in trades". This based on the Jays doing "Just get in" and NYY doing "Go for it" by adding F Montas who I consider a solid #2/3 SP.
John Northey - Thursday, January 26 2023 @ 02:46 PM EST (#426407) #
Yet despite 'going for it' the Yankees won just 3 more playoff games than the Jays did, enough to get to a second round but that's it.

The cost was... (brackets say where they are for their new teams top prospect list)
  • Chandler Champlain (Royals #26), T.J. Sikkema (Royals #16) and Beck Way (Royals #9) for Andrew Benintendi.
  • Cooper Bowman (A's #29), Luis Medina (A's #14), JP Sears (not ranked) and Ken Waldichuk (A's #2, #67 in MLB) for Frankie Montas and Lou Trivino.
  • Hayden Wesneski (Cubs #12) for Scott Effross.
None were top 100 prospects going into 2022. So a few pretty good prospects there but only Waldichuk is a big time one (top 100). Actually, not bad for the Yankees.

Jays lost...
    Samad Taylor (#25) and Max Castillo (unranked - 9.16 ERA in majors for them) to the Royals for Merrifield
  • Moises Brito (not ranked) and Nick Frasso (#17) to the Dodgers for White
  • Jordan Groshans (#11, -0.1 bWAR) for Bass, Pop and Edward Duran (not ranked as a prospect)
Not bad for the Jays, Groshans the highest ranked and I'm not too excited about him after his power loss.
bpoz - Friday, January 27 2023 @ 08:34 AM EST (#426409) #
Baltimore has a great farm. Their best prospects by quantity are position players. They need to use FA to get a Ryu, Gausman, Bassit type and hope for good health. Their best pitcher is J Means a solid #2.

On paper for 2023 I see Baltimore and Boston improving but falling short of a playoff spot. Sale in Boston was an Ace but so was D Price over his career. The rotations for Baltimore and Boston are not deep unlike NYY, TB and Toronto.

2025 is probably the year when Boston and Baltimore arrive as very strong contenders and stay that way for a few years.

As a Jays fan I have to accept that.
ISLAND BOY - Friday, January 27 2023 @ 11:23 AM EST (#426410) #
Tampa Bay resigned one of their starters, Jeffrey Springs, to a 4 year, 31 million extension. There's a lot of players I don't know in MLB but I'm familiar with most players in the AL East because the Jays play them more, but I'm not familiar with this guy at all. He's a lefthander who started 25 games last season for Tampa and had a 2.45 ERA. This looks like a good deal, averaging 7.75 million a year, and shows how Tampa can keep being competitive on a smaller budget.

Geez, I looked up his stats and he beat Toronto twice in September -- still don't recall him. He hasn't pitched much in the majors so that's why they could sign him to a fairly cheap deal.
bpoz - Friday, January 27 2023 @ 12:17 PM EST (#426411) #
I noticed the Springs signing as well. I think TB is probably taking an unnecessary risk.

Drafted in 2015 by Texas and signed for $1000. This is his 2nd Arb asked $3.55mil offered $2.7for 2023. His deal $4mil, $5.25, $10.5, $10.5. If he gets injured which is common for pitchers TB is on the hook. Now TB can not nontender him or cut him. He could be a #2,3,4, so a good pitcher. $20mil for a #2 FA is common.
Mike Green - Friday, January 27 2023 @ 02:58 PM EST (#426414) #
They have a club option for 2027 also.  The upside for the Rays is quite high; if Springs remains healthy, his 2026 and 2027 seasons could easily be 2.5-3 WAR seasons worth $25-$30M each.  As usual, I think they made an excellent decision. 
greenfrog - Saturday, January 28 2023 @ 12:49 PM EST (#426433) #
The Rays just extended Yandy Diaz (3.8 fWAR last season in 137 games) to a 3/$24m contract, with a club option for 2026. The contract will buy out at least one season of free agency (2025). He's 31 years old. The projection systems have him posting around 3-4 fWAR this year.

I hope the Jays can work out a favourable extension with Jansen and maybe also Chapman this spring.
bpoz - Saturday, January 28 2023 @ 01:00 PM EST (#426434) #
The jays have 2 years of control for Jansen. They may wait to see what he does in 2023 before trying to extend him. Regarding Chapman they possibly try to extend or may offer a QO.
Do long term deals make sense | 85 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.