Jan
24

Tigers land Fielder with nine-year deal

By

Via Tim Brown and Jon Heyman, the Tigers have agreed to sign Prince Fielder to a nine-year contract worth $214M. Detroit recently lost Victor Martinez for the year after he tore his ACL during an offseason workout, so they more than replaced the lost offense. Fielder was never a realistic option for the Yankees, but I have to admit I did have visions of him at DH dancing in my head after Jesus Montero was traded away. That’s some contract, wow.

Categories : Asides, Hot Stove League

177 Comments»

  1. DERP says:

    Scott Boras is a god. Holy shit is he good.

    • Joe R says:

      This. I dont know how he does it. But he always does. Guy is amazing. Real life Arliss

    • Guns of Navarone says:

      Seriously. That’s the first thing I thought of when I heard this. The market for Fielder seemed to be between two teams trying to get him as cheap as possible, and just when you think Boras has lost it… BOOM! 9-years, $214 million.

      • thenamestsam says:

        Seriously. The baseball market can be so mysterious sometimes. I mean if they offered 9 years, 200 Million say, was Prince really walking away from that? Did he really have another offer that could beat that one? It doesn’t seem possible, and yet 9 years 214. Holy shit.

  2. CTRob says:

    I wonder to DH? Miggy’s at 1st right?

    • J.R. says:

      You have to wonder if Miggy and Fielder split 1B and DH. Maybe it keeps them both healthier?

      • Robert says:

        Apparently Fielder will play 1st.Miggy at 3rd not the best defensively but offensively better then NYY,Bos, or Tex.

        • Mike Axisa says:

          It’s two world class hitters and a bunch of average or worse hitters. I’d still take the Yankees, Red Sox, or Rangers lineup first.

        • CTRob says:

          Wow, surprising. I know he played third a few years back but he’s four years older and slower.

          • thenamestsam says:

            For real. Last time he played 3rd at all he put up a UZR/150 of -36.8 in 116 innings there in 2008. If they really try to put him at 3rd I think we might see a new all-time low for UZR. The guy is huge and slow and not a good fielder at 1st.

            If I was Girardi the first time we played them I’d have every single guy who can run at all bunting for hits.

            • Ted Nelson says:

              Yeah, I have to wonder if it lasts. Suppose it depends a bit on each player’s attitude towards DHing, but mostly on what other options they have at 3B vs. at DH.

              • bpdelia says:

                Leyland is neat guaranteed to have a stroke this year Ted. Can you imagine the tar clogged arteries in his neck just pulsating every time an inking ending 5-3 grounder squibs under miggys glove? That being said i want it to happen. I’m skeptically of fgs defensively component of war and this is an awesome case study in an inner circle hof hitters value when weighed against historically bad defense. And yes i think canters 4 years older and probably 20 lbs heavier may make mark Reynolds look like nettles.

            • CTRob says:

              LOL yeah, all bunts except Tex. He’ll try to smash it through the shift.

          • Preston says:

            Not to mention that UZR said he was -36 runs at 3b in 2008.

    • J.R. says:

      Or Miggy moves back to 3B. I know he hasnt played there full time since 07, but you have to wonder if its a possibility.

  3. Rey22 says:

    Scott Boras has done it again. Every offseason people say he’s losing it when 1 or 2 of his players don’t get huge deals, and then he comes through. Unbelievable.

  4. Mike HC says:

    Wow. Nobody was happier about Victor Martinez’s injury than Fielder was. I can only imagine how much extra money and years that made him. I think some “veteran presents” are definitely coming Martinez’s way from Fielder.

  5. J.R. says:

    I didnt see this one coming.

  6. Bob says:

    $24m per year for a DH? Un. Be. Lievable.

  7. sheepmeister says:

    I would love to know the reaction everyone would have if the yankees had signed fielder to this deal.

  8. Ted Nelson says:

    I didn’t expect that at all. I didn’t see the Tigers spending big. Got to give it to their ownership group for being in what’s been a declining city and still expanding payroll. Debatable whether it was a smart decision, but I commend them for their effort.

    • thenamestsam says:

      True. If the Yankees had signed this contract I’d be horrified at the numbers, but I’d still be thrilled to be getting Prince, and appreciative of having an owner who is willing to go for it. However, it’s hard for me to imagine that this is not going to be looking really, really bad for years 7, 8 and 9. Like maybe ARod level bad.

      • Ted Nelson says:

        For whatever reason most teams seem willing to take that risk with the big free agents they sign.

        I’m sure Boras argued that he’s entering what should be his prime years the next 4-5 years and will only be as old as Ortiz after 2012 when the deal finishes. I can see his weight being a negative, but at the same time he plays every day and I’m not sure if there’s a one to one relationship with weight as Ortiz shows

        They basically paid for close to the best case and ignored the probability it happens, but that seems to be the market for some reason.

    • CJ says:

      You wouldn’t expect to see the tigers spending big because the talking heads did not tell us they were. These MLB insiders have been terrible this year. No reason to require a “source” when they post a trade/signing rumor because they sources no as much as we do.

      • Ted Nelson says:

        No, I didn’t expect it because the Tigers play in a city that’s been declining in a very pronounced way the past decade or whatever. Perhaps that trend has changed since the auto makers re-structured, I have no idea. There were rumors/speculation the VMart injury would lead to a big signing for the Tigers, I just didn’t personally believe it. There were some commenters on here who might not have called Prince, but did say they expected a big shake-up.

  9. Brooklyn Ed says:

    Prince will now play where his father once did.

    Now in 2013, I wonder who will play 1B/DH between V-Mart, Miggy, and Prince? Maybe Miggy will go back to 3B?

  10. Holy Ghost says:

    Miggy and Fielder will be like Manny and Ortiz

  11. Ghost says:

    The city of Detroit…Oooof.

  12. split-finger says:

    where does martinez play next season, i know he’s a catcher but isnt he kinda old

  13. Scooter says:

    This is the last thing I wanted to read today. There are now 6 legitimate title contenders in the American League alone (Texas, LAA, Detroit, us, Boston, TB).

    Excuse me while I spend the rest of the day popping anxiety pills…

    • Mike HC says:

      It is good for the AL in general that the level of play is going to be very entertaining. Many great home games to pick and choose to go to throughout the year and just consistently watching great players.

      I’m all for the higher level of play. And its not like the Yanks aren’t getting better either. Regardless of what you think of the Montero trade, we are adding Pineda and Kuroda to our 1st place team last year and taking away practically nothing of value.

  14. Avi says:

    Yeah, hitters are really easier to get than pitchers and they’re cheaper too. Great job Cash!

    • Mike Axisa says:

      They are. Fielder isn’t exactly the best example to use.

      • Scooter says:

        This will definitely push Kenny Williams over the edge on Floyd, Thornton and Dunn if he was considering moving any of them.

      • Avi says:

        Mike, what are good examples?

        • Mike Axisa says:

          Not historical players. It’s like saying a soft-tosser will be fine because Greg Maddux made it work.

          Look at the state of hitters as a whole and the state of pitchers as a whole. Quality pitching is much more difficult to find, just look at the FA market every winter. The elite pitchers are all locked up.

          • Avi says:

            All the elite pitchers are locked up except Hamels of course. There are no great hitters available through the end of next year. If/When they do become available they’ll cost over $200MM. I don’t know, when I look at the state of hitting and pitching as a whole I see quality stating pitchers as much more abundant than quality hitters.

            • Mike Axisa says:

              There have been 132 position players with a 4+ WAR season since 2009 and just 74 pitchers. Granted, WAR isn’t perfect and my cutoff of 4 WAR is completely arbitrary, but the difference is a factor of 1.5.

              • Avi says:

                I’ll take a look at it and try to make sense of it. My string feeling is that quality starting pitching is much more abundant. My arbitrary qualification for quality starting pitcher is 150 IP and an ERA of 3.75 or lower, for quality hitter it’s 25 homers and a .360 OBP or better (like a Nick Swisher kinda hitter).

              • I Live in My Mom's Basement says:

                Interesting. Bill James estimated pitching as being 37% of baseball. Per your stat, pitchers had 36% of the 4+ WAR seasons. Probably means nothing, but an amusing coincidence.

                http://mlb-facts-and-rumors.bl.....2/26016289

    • pat says:

      What does this even mean?

    • Doug says:

      From the chat following the trade, 86% agree that Cash did a great job!

      Thanks for agreeing

      • Avi says:

        86% liked the Vazquez trade and the Pavano signing. I did’t.

        • thenamestsam says:

          Wow, either you’re a visionary leader who should be hired as a GM immediately or you happened to make two lucky guesses on things that were roughly 50/50 in your entire life. I know which I think is more likely.

          • Avi says:

            The former.

          • Ted Nelson says:

            50/50 is a lot different from 86/14…

            I think Avi is right that it doesn’t really matter what 86% of people on a chat thought, and the other trades were just an example.

            (I do tend to agree that the trade is close to 50/50, though I personally lean towards liking the Mariners’ return better due to the certainty they got vs. the relative volatility I feel the Yankees got.)

            • thenamestsam says:

              86% of people thinking the trade is good does not mean that anyone thinks it has an 86% chance of working out. If 100% of people think that the chance of a trade working out is 51%, then 100% of people would think it’s a good trade. The two numbers are not comparable. Almost all trades are going to be close to 50/50 propositions, otherwise one GM didn’t do a very good job.

              • Ted Nelson says:

                A lot of GMs don’t seem to do a very good job…

                Most trades are 50/50, but there’s relevance in more people on a Yankees blog thinking the Yankees’ won? I see your point about the numbers not being comparable, but my point is that the 86% number is not only not comparable to the 50/50… it’s totally worthless. That 86% or 100% of fans on a Yankees blog are happy the Yankees got a pitcher doesn’t mean the odds are actually 51% in the Yankees’ favor.

                • thenamestsam says:

                  No of course not. I wasn’t the one who brought that up. My point was just that saying you don’t like any move probably gives you something close to a 50% chance of having your opinion born out. The fact that Avi can say he was against two other moves that didn’t work out doesn’t really lead me to put any significant additional weight on his opinion about this move.

    • jsbrendog says:

      this is retarded

  15. CJ says:

    How do the Detroit tigers have this kind of money? The most economically depressed city in the country! Unbelievable. They locked up AL central for the foreseeable future.

  16. Brooklyn Ed says:

    Came to think of it, Tex 8 years and $180 is suddenly looking not so bad.

    • Mike HC says:

      good point

    • Bavarian Yankee says:

      it never really looked bad if you ask me. Tex is great, worth the money.

      • Kevin Winters says:

        His numbers are trending down though.

        • Havok9120 says:

          But his defense isn’t. Much as his offense is trending down, he’d still due for at least a minor bounce back statistically. And even if he doesn’t get it, the guy had 39/111. RBI is a crappy stat, but he definitely contributed heavily on offense, even on a down year.

          Not to mention that his defense is stellar. His performance at first base, the extra few feet he gives A-Rod and, especially, Jeter is of enourmous value. AND he digs out throws from those two that would leave most first basemen scrabbling in the sand. Tex is worth every penny Cash paid him. His D and power would make up for a .250 batting average for the rest of the contract. And I’ll be stunned if he hits .250 next season.

  17. Chris says:

    I can’t wait to see Pujols and Fielder at Yankee Stadium this summer. It seems a bit unfair tho to have the two best NL players leave for the AL because of the DH later in their contracts. I wonder if the NL clubs will start to complain about that or if MLB will look to incorporate more interleague games to even things out a bit. It seems a bit unfair that AL teams can gaurentee a spot on a roster even 2 or 3 years after a player is useless in the field.

  18. steve s says:

    Well I think this means Damon to the Yanks for $2M. Also wonder how Cecil will feel now that he’s likely to be be banned as persona non gratis around Comerica as part of Prince’s deal.

  19. CJ says:

    Not a single baseball insider had Detroit involved on prince talks. They’re horrible! Dave dombrowski ninja.

    • Thomas Cassidy says:

      The Tigers were mentioned all over the place, but not as the big suitors for him.

      • CJ says:

        No. Yesterday experts had a “final four”of rangers nationals orioles and mariners. Olney had tigers interested in a one year deal, or 9 buster! Cubs and brewers were mentioned as 1 year possibilities. 1 year – how far off can these “insiders” get?

        • Havok9120 says:

          Twitter was all over the place with Tiggers talk. Heck, there’s been speculation all over Heck’s back 40 that the Tigers would sign him ever since A-Gon went down. I agree with you that the “Big Name Baseball Dudes” are generally overrated, but they’ve been speculating on this for days.

          And beyond that, its understandable that they don’t report on these a lot of the time. If your name was worth a lot of money and prestiege (as a lot of these guys’ are, would YOU attach your name to a rumor of a 9/210 contract from Detroit when the media narrative/fan speculation has said that there’s not a chance of that?

    • Landry says:

      Actually there was a lot of talk about it yesterday on Twitter. Never believed it though…

  20. Bavarian Yankee says:

    so Fielder is still part of the best 3-4 combo. Cabrera-Fielder is even better than Braun-Fielder.

  21. Avi says:

    Adrian Gonzalez should sue his idiot agent John Boggs.

  22. JJ says:

    WOW, this is an awful deal. Never though the Tigers would overpay so badly. Then again, I didn’t think the Angels would either.

  23. Steve (different one) says:

    WTF? Miguel Cabrera is not going to play 3B. They will have to trade Victor Martinez next winter.

  24. Greg says:

    Takes a little bit of drama out of preseason playoff predictions. It will probably be these six teams

    Yankees
    Tigers
    Angels
    Rangers
    Red Sox/Rays

  25. Chris says:

    How soon before the Tigers start talking about thier new “mega TV deal”? I hope these teams aren’t over stretching themselvs with these TV contracts. The Yanks and Sox have had mega money for a while, the Rangers, Angles, and I guess Tigers now might want to take a year or two and learn what its like to budget 160M+ a year. Its like a child being handed 100 dollars for the first time and he buys everything he sees first, and has nothing left for what he wants later in the store.

    • Ted Nelson says:

      Detroit was at $111 million last year and lost a combined $23 million between Guillen and Ordonez. They basically took that money towards Prince. Raises probably push up their overall payroll and I didn’t expect this, but this isn’t a crazy move from the Tigers.

      • RetroRob says:

        If that’s the actual numbers, it’s sort of similar, in a smaller way, to when the Yankees had all that money come off their books with Giambi, Mussina, etc. leaving after 2008, and then going out and signing CC, Tex and AJ. They actually lowered their salary from 2008 to 2009.

  26. Chesser says:

    Okay, so who do the Tigers have to cut loose now to free up money/roster space? Is that person, by any chance, a left-handed hitting DH-type who can fake a corner? Because we have a few AAA arms that would look great wandering the bleak streets of Detroit.

    • Ted Nelson says:

      Probably no one I would guess (not that my guess is worth much). Fielder eats Guillen and Ordonez’s expiring contracts. I imagine their payroll will go up with raises, but I don’t know that it will be too significantly.

      The guy you’re describing could be VMart I suppose… but he’s out for the year. Otherwise their highest paid guys outside Fielder, Cabrera, and Verlander are Valverde, Delmon Young, Porcello, Inge, Peralta. Doubt they find a taker for Inge. Maybe Young.

  27. Joe R says:

    Is this the last time we have an off season with 2 $200mm contracts?

    • RetroRob says:

      No.

      I mean, I don’t expect it to happen reguarly, but since salaries will keep increasing, there is bound to be another year when two mega-stars hit the free-agent wire. When that will happen, I have no idea.

    • vin says:

      I would say that it’s just the opposite… this will be the first and definitely not last time. May take awhile before it happens again, but it will happen eventually.

  28. Robinson Tilapia says:

    He was never going to be a Yankee despite the screams a few vocal fans on here. I really don’t care. Bring the competition on. It’ll be that much sweeter when the Yanks mow them down.

    They are going to be hating that contract halfway through. Sweet baby majesus.

    The real winners, of course, will be the all-you-can-eat buffets Prince and Miggy hit after work.

    • CJ says:

      I was a prince in pinstripes cheerleader. I hate seeing him on the team the beat yanks in 5. I can’t blame the yanks for not going 9/214. I thought 8/180 yes. I would have been pissed if he signed one of these ridiculous one year deals reported and yanks missed out. Fact is competition in AL is the best I can remember. I don’t feel as confident in Pineda Kuroda as I did this morning.

      • Robinson Tilapia says:

        “I was a Prince in pinstripes cheerleader.”

        Dude, you were the head cheerleader with the biggest pompoms around.

        • CJ says:

          No doubt. I had the pompoms out for sure. Just saying I didn’t see 9/214. I can’t blame the yanks for not getting involved in that bidding war. Even if they were in at 8/180 boras gets detroits offer and comes back with 10/240. Even I would bow out at that point.

  29. Avi says:

    Anyone else bothered that Fielder costs $210MM and the Red Sox got Adrian Gonzalez for $154MM?

    • Adrian Gonzalez says:

      I am.

      • Avi says:

        Yes but your an idiot for hiring anyone not named Scot Boras

        • Adrian Gonzalez says:

          It must have been all that west coast living out in San Diego that dulled my senses. Fortunately, that lack of a killer instinct will benefit the Yankees when I’m facing them.

          Seriously, regarding Boras, I think I read a study in the last couple of months that showed his clients made on average more than 20% more than clients of other agents. That is a lot of money at this level. You have to wonder why anyone questions him.

    • Prince Fielder says:

      I’m not.

    • Ted Nelson says:

      It definitely looks good in comparison, but AGon is two years older and was coming from Petco.

      • Steve (different one) says:

        Sure, but AGon is also normal, human shape. Fielder is spherical. Good luck with that in 5 years when the contract is barely half over.

        This contract may be worse than A-Rod’s.

        • RetroRob says:

          Could be, but I think we have to admit here that we really don’t know. I think Rob Neyer is the one that’s pointed out a few times that we really don’t have a comparison for Fielder, anymore than we did/do for CC Sabathia. I can’t think of a single player built like Prince. Oh, sure, I can think of beefy players, but I can’t think of any hitter that truly is built like Fielder. He’s list at 5’11″, but he’s probably about 5’9″, and he’s listed at around 270, but rumor is that he’s pushing 300. He’s short, he’s fat, and he’s a tremendous power hitter. He’s pretty unique.

          Because of that, there should be concern, so we’re actually agreeing here. My point, though, is we don’t know how he’s going to age.

        • Ted Nelson says:

          Not sure it’s more than a marginal concern vs. a “normal shape” player. Weight isn’t a great indicator of injury. Fielder is a big boy, but I don’t think he’s obese to an unhealthy point. Guy literally plays 162 games a year in the field. He’s going to be 36 his last season.

          Not to prove my point, but just to offer one example to prove that weight doesn’t predict longevity: Ortiz vs. A-Rod. A-Rod is a freak athletically and conditioning wise, and he’s having trouble staying on the field at an age when Ortiz is still thriving.

          Jim Thome is a big boy who is having a long career. Matt Stairs lasted forever a bit pudgy, granted he wasn’t used much. Berkman isn’t adonis. Andruw Jones has lost a lot, but can still rake. We’ll have to see if Adam Dun can bounce back.

          • Tomm says:

            Yikes. What do you weigh, fella? Do you eat donuts?

            • Ted Nelson says:

              What does my weight have to do with anything? I’m 6 feet 185 pounds. What I weigh has nothing to do with what I think of Fielder. He’s played 162, 161, and 162 regular season games the past three seasons.

              • Tomm says:

                He is one of the fattest 27 year old athletes I have ever seen. Even fatter than his father, whom he closely resembles. By age 33, big fat Cecil was on the Yankees, a pretty average player at that (only 13 hrs in over 400 ABs, no defense, so-so average). The Tigers have been snookered by Boras, the greatest player agent in the history of the world. And so have you.

    • vin says:

      Adrian should be. But that’s the risk you take when you sign an extension versus becoming a FA. Gonzalez potentially traded 70 million dollars for the certainty of getting a big contract one year early. It’s definitely the safe move, but I can’t really fault him.

      As we discussed yesterday with Tim Lincecum… he’s in a position to wait to reach FA because he has already made “big” money during his arbitration-eligible years… which lessens the risk some. I believe Adrian had made good money prior to signing the extension (Cots seems to be down at the moment), but obviously he wanted to go the safe route.

      • Ted Nelson says:

        Good point.

      • Havok9120 says:

        And even during these days of economic bliss, its ALMOST (almost) little more than keeping score. Could any of us NOT live on one-hundred and fifty MILLION dollars versus living off two-hundred ten million? What’s the difference? Maybe that our great-great-great grandchildren get to attend college for free versus our great-great-great-great-great grandchildren? Maybe we get an 11000 square foot house over a 9000? Our swimming pool is an extra foot-by-foot bigger?

        Maybe A-Gon just figured all of that out.

  30. RetroRob says:

    I’m guessing 1B has got to be a thin position (at least in terms of impact bats) in the NL this year.

    No way Joey Votto sits back and sees this money and re-signs with the Reds.

  31. CMP says:

    $214 million for a DH?? They must be crazy.

    Unless he hits like Barry Bonds, which is impossible in that stadium, Detroit will never get their moneys worth.

    All those naysayers who doubted Scott Boras were obviously wrong too.

  32. Chris says:

    Its a much better deal to swallow than the Pujols deal. At least Prince is on the right side of 30.

  33. Avi says:

    Montero a Mariner. Look at this I’m crying here.
    http://twitpic.com/8b9knh

  34. Bavarian Yankee says:

    I’m still waiting for them to announce that Fielder can opt out after 3 years :D

    • RetroRob says:

      Ha. Four years, maybe five would make sense. He’ll still be “only” 31 or 32, and if he’s highly productive, he can then cash in on another longer-term deal. Oh, and why am I saying four or five years? Because he’ll know the Yankees will be in the market for a 1B’man!

    • kevin winters says:

      No opt out clause

  35. ultimate913 says:

    Drag bunts to 3rd and/or 1st all day when playing DET.

    Yay or nay?

  36. Landry says:

    At least since his dad played there Prince knows they have a uniform that will fit him.

  37. Steve (different one) says:

    After thinking about it, this contract is worse than both Howard and Arod.

  38. Rich in NJ says:

    Trading Montero looks worse by the second.

    • thenamestsam says:

      This is related how, exactly?

      • Robinson Tilapia says:

        Montero-trade-Tourretes, apparently. Sad new thing which began showing up last week.

        • Rich in NJ says:

          Project much? Actually that’s a much more apt description of people like yourself, who apparently object to the posting of an obvious truth, because, well, the Yankees know best or something.

      • Rich in NJ says:

        It shows how important and how expensive impact young bats are. They are the most prized commodity in MLB.

        • CJ says:

          Not only as a slugging percentage power WAR commodity but as a revenue/ticket sales/cable ratings investment.

        • RetroRob says:

          CC Sabathia, Cliff Lee and, oh, Tim Lincecum today showed you how valuable impact starters are too. And the offseason trades of the fleet of young pitchers, Pineda being one, and the talent it took to get them, also shows you how expensive young pitchers are. Your point just drowned.

          • CJ says:

            The Yankees do know about this Tex ARod, ARod II after opt out. Just a comment on the $ value of a marquee power bat ARod prince pujols Howard. Tulo Braun longoria got locked up to big deals early. Fielder>Lincecum in revenue generating star player. On the field value is debatable.

            • thenamestsam says:

              You are really claiming that you have some idea who is a better revenue generator between Fielder and Lincecum? I’m going to call 100% bullshit on that.

              • CJ says:

                I don’t think I’m claiming anything worth calling bullshit. Just guessing 162 game player and the long ball puts more fannies in the seats and generated more revenue especially with tv ratings. Trying to consider the business side beyond the diamond.

                • Havok9120 says:

                  Whether the team has a given batter in the box has never gotten me to attend a game. Whether the team has a good chance of winning that game, or of making the playoffs has.

                  This is, of course, a purely subjective viewpoint, but it still holds merit. If we measured regularly measured batting averages in the 3 or 4 hundreds, maybe I’d agree with you. But a truly great pitcher (which we all agree Pineda can become) can hold the average batter in the mid-low .100s. A great batter is unlikely to tee off an average pitcher to the tune of a .500 batting average. If a pitcher can cut the average batting average by a third, but a batter can’t increase the average batting average by a third, how is their value the same?

  39. Holy Ghost says:

    The Tigers and Angels are ruining baseball!

    I just had to say it since I know that’s what we’d hear about the Yankees if they added another $200 million contract

  40. Tomm says:

    What a great move! I actually think Fielder’s worth probably about 50 million dollars a year, which means that the Tigers are actually saving about 30 million a year.

    I also think it’s cool that a guy named Fielder is going to be a DH.

    Zowie!

  41. Okyankee24 says:

    Tex got effed this offseason. He will never see an all star game again.

  42. Okyankee24 says:

    Tex got screwed this offseason. He will never see an all star game again.

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