We didn’t get into this much yesterday because we had some bigger fish to fry, but with the announcement that A-Rod is returning to the Yanks through 2017 came word of his salary structure. It actually makes sense. Take a look:
2008: $27 million
2009: $32 million
2010: $32 million
2011: $31 million
2012: $29 million
2013: $28 million
2014: $25 million
2015: $21 million
2016: $20 million
2017: $20 million
I love this part of the deal: It’s not at all back-loaded. For years, teams have been doling out back-loaded contracts. Take Jason Giambi’s, for example. In his first seasons with the Yankees he made just $13 million a year. Last year, he made $21 million and stands to earn another lofty paycheck again as the second highest paid player in baseball.
The Yankees are paying A-Rod more or less what he’s worth. By the time 2017 rolls around and he’s 42, the Yanks will be paying him what seems to be a reasonable $20 million. They pay him the big bucks up front when he’s still producing and the not-quite-as-big bucks at the end of the deal.
Of course, the historic performance bonuses – $6 million each for tying Mays, Ruth, Aaron and Bonds and another $6 million for breaking the record – render this point moot in a way. A-Rod could take home $44 million in 2015 or 2016. But the Yankees know that the attention, ratings and revenue from A-Rod’s home run chance will more than make up for those $6 million bonuses.
All in all, this is some solid accounting and an economically sensible deal. Now, don’t get me started on Torii Hunter.