Three Yanks highlight worst free agent contracts 05-09

Yanks call-up Claggett
Game 12: Brother, can you spare some pitching?

Yanks fans are plenty aware of the poor contracts the team has doled out over the past eight, ten years. When your pocketbooks are that deep, it’s bound to happen from time to time. Thankfully, deep pockets also mean the ability to recover. At Jorge Says No, Josh goes over the worst free agent contracts from 2005 through 2009. Three Yanks made the list, and they’re fairly obvious: Carl Pavano, Kei Igawa, Kyle Farnsworth. A-Rod did not make the cut, although I disagree. The worst third baseman contract Josh found was Adrian Beltre, but he was eventually talked out of it, replacing him with Vinny Casilla. Sorry, but two years and $6.2 million for no production is still better than 10 years and $275 million for a guy who will be 42 when the contract expires. Make sure to check out the whole list; you should be able to name the whole outfield without peeking.

Yanks call-up Claggett
Game 12: Brother, can you spare some pitching?
  • steve (different one)

    really, Farnsworth?

    i’d call Farnsworth’s current deal with the Royals about 10 X’s more inexcusable than his deal with the yankees.

    at least when the yankees signed him he was coming off a truly dominant season. it was also part of a two-part plan to let Gordon walk and collect the 2 draft picks that netted them Joba and IPK.

    Farnsworth was generally disappointing with the Yankees, but he wasn’t completely useless.

    Jaret Wright was a worth signing than Farnsworth.

    • steve (different one)

      “worse”

    • mg

      curse you for even mentioning that name. i hate wright soooo much.

  • http://www.new.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/profile.php?id=594331910&ref=name Jamal G.

    I’m hesitant to label ARod’s current contract as one of the worse because when you are talk all-time talents (see: Ramirez, Manny; Bonds, Barry), you are talking about guys who produce well into the decline years of an average major-league hitter.

    Let’s take a look at Bonds for a second. In the seasons in which he primarily played at ages 41 (2006) and 42 (2007), he produced lines of .454/.545/26/49 (OBP/SLG%/HR/XBH) and .480/.565/28/42, respectively. Now, obviously Bonds is a greater hitter than Alex Rodriguez, but they both are once-in-a-generation offensive players, thus predicting their declining years involve much more uncertainty than the norm.

    In essence, I’m not saying ARod’s current mega-contract is favorable, but I also think it’s a bit shortsighted to look at it simply as employing a hitter $20M in each of his age-40-and-41 seasons (2016 and 2017) when you are talking about this kind of talent and worth ethic.

    • http://www.blogtalkradio.com/pics/hostpics/5e4be77c-8e57-4d7a-8533-add8ed030ad5JerkStore.jpg Slugger27

      im with u jamal… 10 years with no other bidders was silly, and wed all prefer a shorter term, but i dont think its a disaster or anything… alex has the build, work ethic, and talent to produce into his 40s

    • El Generalissimo

      While I agree 100%, you can only judge Arod’s contract in hindsight… Bonds isnt a good example because there is the very real possibility or 100% actuality that Bonds was using steroids at that time to enhance his production.

      • http://www.new.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/profile.php?id=594331910&ref=name Jamal G.

        You really think Bonds was using post-2005? The testing vastly improved in 2005, I feel comfortable with the thought that he was clean during the 2006-2007 seasons.

        • Drew

          True. I think he could still play and put up above average numbers.

        • http://www.blogtalkradio.com/pics/hostpics/5e4be77c-8e57-4d7a-8533-add8ed030ad5JerkStore.jpg Slugger27

          plus we have the added benefit of the DH that the giants didnt have… so runs he would give back on defense are irrelevant and we can calculate his production strictly by what he does at the plate

        • Nady Nation

          HGH

          • Drew

            ANDY

            • http://heavysoundsandtheabstracttruth.files.wordpress.com/2008/12/alg_burnett-sabathia-3.jpg Mike Pop

              Today, redemption is spelled R-O-N.

      • mg

        I disagree. You cant judge contracts based on how they turn out but rather by how smart they were at the time in terms of risk, reward and what the market was like at the time. By those
        metrics i think we bid against ourselves and are betting that he will be healthy and productive for a very long time.

        Think of it like placing a bet at craps and pretending it’s investing. You may win but that doesnt mean it was smart.

  • Andy In Sunny Daytona

    I can’t take any “Worst Free Agent Contract” list seriously when they have 2 Theo Epstein signings. I don’t know about anyone else, but that guy to me, is perfection personified. Epstein is smarter than Einstein, wiser than Ghandi, more witty than Pryor, better looking than Pitt, more charming than Clooney and a better guitar player than Pawlikowski.

    • Steve H

      IETC.

      • http://heavysoundsandtheabstracttruth.files.wordpress.com/2008/12/alg_burnett-sabathia-3.jpg Mike Pop

        Steve H, this Celtic game is wild.

  • http://www.blogtalkradio.com/pics/hostpics/5e4be77c-8e57-4d7a-8533-add8ed030ad5JerkStore.jpg Slugger27

    carlos lee is worse than andruw jones

    i guess vernon wells wasnt technically a FA, otherwise he wouldve made the list right?

    • Steve H

      Carlos Lee’s OPS+’s in Houston have been 126 and 144. While the contract may come back to haunt them down the road, it’s hasn’t been a bad deal yet. What if they end up trading him before he begins to decline to an AL team, he’d be worth what they paid him while there. Andruw Jones was so bad they are paying him 30+ million for ONE season of an OPS+ of 34.

      • http://www.blogtalkradio.com/pics/hostpics/5e4be77c-8e57-4d7a-8533-add8ed030ad5JerkStore.jpg Slugger27

        carlos lee turns 33 this season and gives plenty of runs back on defense… and he doesnt look like a type of player that would age particularly well…

        andruws was terrible, awful actually dont get me wrong, but 100 million is a LOT more than 36 million

        come to think of it, maybe andruw should stay and carlos should replace gary matthews

    • ClayBuchholzLovesLaptops

      Kei Igawa wasn’t really a free agent. The contract isn’t really the problem but the $ 26M posting fee.

  • http://heavysoundsandtheabstracttruth.files.wordpress.com/2008/12/alg_burnett-sabathia-3.jpg Mike Pop

    Eh, I don’t think Farns is that bad. I’m with you on A-Rod, a 10 year deal is just silly. A-Rod and his shenanigans.

    • Andy In Sunny Daytona

      What’s the name of that restaurant you like with all the goofy shit on the walls and the mozzarella sticks?

  • Tripp

    No love for J.D. Drew? 5 years 80 million for an average right fielder?

    • http://heavysoundsandtheabstracttruth.files.wordpress.com/2008/12/alg_burnett-sabathia-3.jpg Mike Pop

      Ya, I think that was a little too much but you got to be fair. When J.D. is healthy, he mashes with the best.

      • Andy In Sunny Daytona

        When Bank of America doesn’t give out risky home loans, it’s a pretty good bank.

  • MikeD

    Joseph, the problem with your assessment of A-Rod’s contract is it involves projection, and is not an assessment based on past performance.

    A player’s contract doesn’t have to be completely finished to determine if it was one of the worst, since there are other rating categories. It was obvious that Farnsworth’s contract was bad because he never was an elite-level closer. It was obvious Pavano’s contract was bad because he was injured for years, and was never all that good. That’s hardly the case with A-Rod, one of the greatest hitters ever. His contract may fall more into the category of Derek Jeter’s. Very productive, but the team still paid more than they needed to.

    There’s a large gulf between overpaying for an elite-level player, and the “worst contract” category.

  • Mr. Rodriguez

    I don’t think as fans we should worry about how much money the Yankees are spending on their roster. I’m no sports biz expert, but there’s no doubt that ROI is existent. They are able to dump large amounts of money on these players which further motivates them to prove what their worth. Arod won’t dissapoint moving forward. He knows his reputation is tainted, but he can improve his imagine and is still an incredible athlete who takes care of himself .

    As a 48 year old man myself, I’m in the best shape of my life because I hit the gym hard. He will be fine. IMO 275 mil over 10 years is exceptional. We will get many more productive years out of Alex.

  • 618B

    I think and I’m sure you will correct me if I am wrong, A-Rod was expected to be the next Babe Ruth (pre steroids talk) Having a player hitting Home Run # 800 in your uniform and in your park was a very good investment even if he is 42 and batting 200 with a steel glove. I’m not convinced it isn’t still.

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