Feb
01

Report: Mauer agrees to 10-year extension (UPDATE: No he didn’t)

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Update (4:31pm): Buster Olney is shooting the report down now. So much for that.

4:20pm: First it was Felix Hernandez, and now another drool-worthy future free agent target is off the market. Via MLBTR, AL MVP Joe Mauer has agreed to a 10-year contract extension with the Twins, locking him up until the ripe old age of 37. No word on the money yet, but I would think it’s over $200M. Good for him, good for the Twins, good for baseball, bad for the Yanks.

Categories : Asides, Hot Stove League

110 Comments»

  1. Good for the Twins. I’m OK from our perspective. We have Jesus.

    The Red Sox are gonna be fine too, because they’re going to slot Casey Kelly in at C on the days that he’s not winning them Cy Youngs.

    Win-win-win.

  2. JMK aka The Overshare's Garden Apartment Complex says:

    This is good for Mauer, the Twins, and baseball. I wonder if Carl Pohlad’s son is more willing to spend money than his father. Credit where credit’s due though, in spite of being miserly (or because), the Twins have had a really competitive club for a very long time.

  3. ev says:

    That is an insane extension

    • Reggie C. says:

      Whatevs… Mauer can become the new 1B after Morneau leaves as a FA after 2013, or if too soon, the eventual new 1B.

  4. chriskeo says:

    Well, it’s best for the game this way.

    Positives:
    1. The Red Sox can’t sign him.
    2. The Yankees still have Jesus Montero, Austin Romine, and other promising prospects.

  5. Praveen says:

    At least this keeps him away from the Red Sox.

  6. Riddering says:

    Worse for the Red Sox.

    I never thought we’d get Mauer (unlike Felix) so this transaction actually pleases me. I hope he continues to help his team take AL Central. A win-win-win decision for the Twins and Morneau no longer has to threaten to disown Mauer over FA.

    Now the reasonable among us can devote more time to drooling over our catching prospects.

  7. The Scout says:

    This is always the risk when you (that is, the Yankees) opt to stay out of one free agent class because the next one is supposed to be much better. Although it worked out that way in 2008, it isn’t the norm. Teams will invest heavily to retain their top home-grown talent because the marketing benefits are enormous. Worse yet, once the talent pool shrinks because teams keep their best players, the price of the remaining high-end talent tends to escalate.

    Fortunately for the Yankees, though, the organization is well-stocked with catching talent on the rise. So this should not be a position need when Posada is done.

    • Hughesus Christo says:

      Are you referring to Matt effing Holliday? Please tell me there’s some other free agent who secretly hit the market this offseason.

      • Steve H says:

        This. You stay out of the FA market if it’s weak AND you have to grossly overpay for the top guys, who are only top guys, because the FA class is weak.

      • The Scout says:

        I’m saying no more or less than what I said. I’m not suggesting the Yankees should have signed player X or Y. I referred to one justification Cashman has given for avoiding the 2009 pool; he believes 2010 will be stronger. The problem, I indicated, is that you have no control over who will sign with their own team (or be traded and then sign a long-term deal with their new team). I really cannot say it any more clearly. Now I’ve said it twice. Of course, people insist on reading into some comments something more than is there…..

    • This is always the risk when you (that is, the Yankees) opt to stay out of one free agent class because the next one is supposed to be much better.

      As one of the biggest “Let’s not trade for Player X because there’s a great crop of free agents in the 2010-2011 offseason we can sign for nothing but money” advocates around here, let me preemptively say one thing in my defense:

      I never EVER expected Joe Mauer to be part of next year’s free agent class. I always spoke of the free agents available next winter NOT INCLUDING Mauer, since I always assumed the Twinkies would lock him up, as they did.

    • JMK aka The Overshare's Garden Apartment Complex says:

      There’s also the added benefit of Mauer being home-grown-home-grown talent. It’s actually sort of amazing that the Twins had that pick in a year in which a generational talent from Minnesota was there.

      • Steve H says:

        Yet got crap for taking him over Prior.

        • To be fair, though, Mark Prior was the shiznit before Dusty Baker broke him.

          • To be fair, though, Mark Prior had a whole world of mechanical trouble despite being overused.

          • Steve H says:

            Yeah, but even if Mark Prior hit his peak, you’d still likely take Mauer. Add in that Mauer was 20% of the cost of Prior, and that Mauer was from Minnesota, and it looks like a no-brainer.

            • Mike Axisa says:

              How do you figure he was 20% of the cost? IIRC, Prior got $10M, Mauer $5M and change.

              • Steve H says:

                I was going off my obviously poor memory. That being said, even at 50% of the cost my point remains the same, if weakened.

            • True.

              Not saying that the Twins should have taken Prior, just giving Prior (and the Prior backers from back in the day) some love. He was a damn good prospect in his own right, and his career was probably cut short due to horrible player development practices from one of the two great pitcher-killers of the modern baseball world in Johnnie B. “Dusty” Baker, Jr.

              • Steve H says:

                Yeah, I have no doubt that the majority of teams would have taken Prior, in that he was extremely high end talent and close to the majors. Mauer was definitely a bigger question mark, but I don’t think the Twins deserved the backlash they got. It was deemed as “only about money”, but there was certainly more to it.

            • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi says:

              I’m going off of memory here, but I think you’re significantly underestimating the perceived gulf between Prior and Mauer as prospects at the time they were draft-eligible. It’s easy to look back now and lose perspective on this, but Prior was like Strasburg when he came out of USC, he was seen as a once in a generation kind of talent. Mauer, while highly-regarded, just wasn’t in that class at the time.

              It all worked out for the Twins in the end, but that doesn’t mean that Mauer was a better prospect than Prior was, at that time. It was a financial decision.

              • Steve H says:

                I agree with that, see above. I just remember the Twins getting destroyed because people claimed it was only about money. They still spent quite a bit on the bonus. Had it only been about money, they wouldn’t have taken Mauer either, they would have taken the Matt Bush of that draft.

                • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi says:

                  Eh, I think they were just lucky that the Matt Bush of that draft, the local guy who was not the most expensive option, happened to be Joe Mauer. It certainly wasn’t a laughable pick like the Bush pick was, but it was still universally knocked at the time.

                • Steve H says:

                  But he still cost $5 million, which was one of the biggest bonuses of all time.

                • Mike Axisa says:

                  The Mauer-Prior decision is a different animal than the Matt Bush thing. Both Prior and Mauer were legit 1/1 talents, but there was no stand out guy in 04. Stephen Drew and Jered Weaver were the top guys, but they weren’t on the Mauer-Prior level. The Tigers got slammed for taking Verlander 2nd overall in 04 because he considered more of a mid-first round guy, but that worked out well.

                  It’s just that Prior was sooo good, it was hard to believe they passed on him.

                • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi says:

                  Yeah I exaggerated a bit too much there, Mauer and Bush aren’t comparable at all (although I tried to say as much in saying that the Mauer pick wasn’t laughable like the Bush pick). Mauer would have been a top pick whether the Twins were picking at the top of the draft or not, but Prior was the consensus number 1 that year.

                  I’ll stand by the point that Mauer was most certainly not a no-brainer over Prior, though, per the comment I responded to.

    • Riddering says:

      So the Yankees should have snatched up an expensive FA this offseason at a position they didn’t need to fill with a superstar in case another superstar who fills a position that isn’t a need for the Yanks resigns with his home team…?

      GDI, Cashman is running this organization in all the wrong ways.

      • The Scout says:

        I will point you to my response above. For some reason, people here persist in reading into a comment something that is NOT there.

        OK, for those who seem to be having difficulty with English today: No, I did not advocate throwing money at a free agent just for the sake of spending money. All I said was that you cannot bank on a deep free agent class a year in advance because some, even most, of the top players will resign with their own team. What looks like a strong free agent class today for after 2010 simply may prove to be a lot less attractive as the Mauers of the world make long-term deals to stay put.

        • The Honorable Congressman Mondesi says:

          Here’s what people are taking issue with… You said:

          “This is always the risk when you (that is, the Yankees) opt to stay out of one free agent class because the next one is supposed to be much better.”

          What people, pretty reasonably, think you’re saying there, is that the Yankees should have spent money this offseason because it was reported (apparently falsely) that one of the players they were presumably targeting next offseason won’t be available.

          But the response to that line of thinking is that the Yankees weren’t necessarily making a decision this offseason to not spend on the most expensive free agents because they were making a choice between spending in 2009-2010 or spending in 2010-2011, but that they chose not to spend on the most expensive free agents in 2009-2010 because the players available weren’t to their liking, regardless of whether a particular player, like Joe Mauer, will be available in 2010-2011.

          And, since you reacted so sensitively to the responses… Calm down, dude. Nobody’s having difficult with English, there’s no need to be a dick.

  8. Marc says:

    You can quote this, if Montero catches 100 games at the Major League level I’ll eat my shoe.

  9. Reggie C. says:

    Fantastic news.

    Now we’re for sure going to swim or sink with the current catching depth assembled in our farm. The gauntlet is fully down for Montero, Romine, JR Murphy, and Sanchez to become the next full-time Yankees catcher.

  10. chriskeo says:

    Well maybe not, according to Buster Olney (who cited multiple sources) the preliminary deal may not be in place yet.
    Its the last few tweets.

    http://twitter.com/Buster_ESPN

  11. Rey22 says:

    It was inevitable…but still….

    …Nooooooooooooooooooooooo!!! :(

  12. The Hernadez extension hurts more. I’m more surprised that the King didn’t use his maximum leverage for more money.

    Mauer eschewing free agency to stay in his hometown was much more predictable.

    • Steve H says:

      King Felix’ extension hurts more, but was also more likely. As a pitcher his risk of injury is significantly higher than Mauer’s, and he needs to get the $$ while he can.

  13. Drew says:

    This is good news. Jesus to teh 2011 Yankees’ Catcher.

  14. Now that the Yankees are out on Mauer, you have to think they’ll use some of their 2012 Mauer budget for Damon, who is a HoF OFer and one of the greatest LH bats of all time

    /heyman’d

  15. even if it isnt done yet it will get done. just act like it is

  16. AndrewYF says:

    There’s a lot of premium talent signing premium extensions with their teams. Much more than there used to be. It could very well be that Sabathia and Teixeira are the two best free agents in a very, very long time.

    • Zack says:

      Disagree, Prince Fielder will see FA, and other Boras clients will as well. Cain probably will, can SF afford Lincecum and Cain along with Zito’s contract?

      There will always be elite FA, there will not just be 5 top guys under 30 available, there never are, it’s always usually just 2-3.

      • AndrewYF says:

        Has Cain been a better pitcher than CC Sabathia’s final 4 pre-FA years? No. Is he likely to be? Again, no.

        Is Prince Fielder an elite hitter now, better than Teixeira? Yes, but look at his father’s career trajectory. We all know how humongous Cecil Fielder is. Prince Fielder is bigger. That, and he’s a DH-in-waiting. Plus, his middle name is an i away from ‘Semen’. Furthermore, he’s not a FA yet.

        I could see an argument for Adrian Gonzalez being a better FA than Mark Teixeira, but not by that much, and again he’s 2 years away from it. Who knows what will happen. If he gets traded, there’s a good bet Adrian will sign an extension. Boras does love to get his clients to FA, but if Fielder gets offered a ridiculous extension, there’s no rule that says Boras isn’t going to take it.

        There may occasionally be elite free agents on the scale of Sabathia and Teixeira, but certainly not at the rate of those from 2000 to 2009. Those days are over. And I would bet dollars to donuts that Tim Lincecum doesn’t don another team’s uniform for the next 10 years.

        • Zack says:

          CC’s ERA+
          05: 104
          06: 139
          07: 141
          08: 157

          Cain’s ERA+
          06: 123
          07: 118
          09: 151
          10: —

          Pretty close to me, plus Cain will be a year younger I believe when he hits fA.

          “Furthermore, he’s not a FA yet.”
          -The whole discussion was about future elite FAs

          “but if Fielder gets offered a ridiculous extension, there’s no rule that says Boras isn’t going to take it.”
          -Rule? No. Fair to predict? Yes. When was the last time a Boras’ client signed an extension a year away from FA?

  17. Update (4:31pm): Buster Olney is shooting the report down now. So much for that.

    Meh, it’s just delaying the inevitable. Maybe it ends up only an 8 year deal or something, but Mauer’s still going to get locked up by the end of the week.

  18. Marc says:

    Screw Buster, where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

  19. Reggie C. says:

    Its probably premature , but I don’t think we’ve kicked around the possibility of Justin Morneau hitting FA after 2013. When the Mauer deal gets signed, does anyone think the Twins will have enough down the pipeline to commit the monies to resigning Morneau? I’m leaning towards no … especially considering that team’s need for ace pitching.

    • I bet when Morneau’s deal is up, the Twins replace him internally.

      They’ll either have a good bat in the minors who can play first (since pretty much everyone can play first), or they’ll have a good catcher in the minors and move Mauer to first.

    • JSquared says:

      I don’t think they would re-sign him. internal options are probably a better bet. Getting the two picks and using any saved money on pitching would probably benefit them.

    • Marc says:

      The Twins aren’t poor people, they’re moving into a new outdoor stadium, Nathan’s deal will be off the books by then. Non of their other players are due for huge raises by then.

      They very well could afford Morneau and Mauer.

      • JAG says:

        They could also do much, much worse than locking up a core of Mauer and Morneau. I’ve got no feeling one way or the other whether Morneau will be a FA or not at the end of his deal, but I could definitely see it going either way, and unless Morneau’s extension is ridiculously high, the Twins might not be doing themselves a disservice either way.

        -JM

  20. Warren says:

    Why can’t the media wait till there is a signed signature on a contract with the ink dried ?

    • chriskeo says:

      Why can’t the media wait till there is a signed signature on a contract with the ink dried ?
      This is our fault partially. It also doesn’t help that outside of the Damon/Boras drama, not much else is going on right now.

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