Megadeals Over With?
"Megadeal" defined by Kenny as $100M total, $20M per


SSI doesn't often link to videos, but here's a 5-minute panel worth your Denizen Dime.  Brian Kenny argues on MLBNow that teams should never sign $100M deals and "I mean never."  The question seems kind of frivolous at first take, but ... nobody has signed yet, right?  That's a fact.

Some analysts are saying, they're done --- > until next winter, when the really irresistible free agents hit the market again.  Is Dr. D remembering this wrong, or didn't the owners do a pretty good job resisting super long deals until about the time Manny Ramirez (and then ARod) hit the market?  Seems it took the REALLY tempting guys, the Kershaw types, to draw out the decade-long contracts.  Correct me if I'm wrong.

This year you got 2nd-tier guys, you got cost control momentum, you got Scott Boras with a market glut of the impact players, and so forth.  Also, it's possible for MegaDeals to not quite be "over" and yet for us to still see a TREND against monster 10-year, $240M transactions.

The point, of course, is that if we can't hope for Ohtani any more, maybe we can at least dream a little longer about Jake Arrieta.  :- ) 


What USSM took so long to realize -- not trying to be snarky -- and what 30 GM's have known since at least 1979 -- was that a team does well to "overpay" real stars because those stars often FAR overperform their salaries early in the deal.  The deal looks bad later, true, but so what?  It's not like these corporations don't have accountants to move money back and forth in time.

Just how much do you think Aaron Judge was worth last year, in bases gained and bases lost?  We'll give you a second.  Think it over and take a guess.










Judge was worth $66 million.




Here is the list of 2017 stars - just the batters - by money EARNED (not received).  You will find about ten of them over $50M and about twenty of them over $40M.

Here's the list of 2017 pitchers by $$ value.  Sale and Kluber were both $60M-ish, there are plenty of stars making half their value.  Guess who was worth $25M?  Mike Leake.  :- )  Whoops!  I always forget to remove the "qualified by IP" criterion ... James Paxton, $37M in his 2/3 a season.

When Jerry Dipoto calls free agency a "long, dark hallway" he is simply mistaken or (more probably) he is exaggerating to make a point; remember Arte Moreno grabbing Josh Hamilton and Albert Pujols over Dipoto's objections.  Even Robinson Cano, an apparently obvious example of an overpay, has been worth $130M worth of bases in 4 years and will end up at $200M or more by the time he's done.  That's not exactly a tragedy.  And the $200M finish is assuming he declines from his "meh," injury, 2017.  If Robby has any kind of renaissance at all, he's going to sail by $240M.  In 2016, he was worth $47M.


So as much as Dr. D likes and admires Brian Kenny, he's forced to take the other side of this one.  And if Arrieta's terms come down towards the 5-, 6-year range, let's not be all too quick to call it irrational.  :- )  If a MegaDeal is 5 years x $20M, count me in on Arrieta.



P.S. it's part of SSI's job to weed links for yer.  Here is a reallly tight ESPN piece on Jay-Z declaring Scott Boras "over" as a big time agent.  The piece is several years old which makes several parts of it worth even more of a smile.  Did you know Scott Boras was rich?  $175 million.



There has to be an economic law out there somewhere to show that if the goal of a team is to win, then unless you won, that $40 million "worth" of "value" Paxton brought us wasn't worth jack-squat in the end. Might as well have had Andrew Moore out there, the result wasn't much different, we lost.

In baseball we can determine the winners and the losers. It's like a lottery ticket. Until the ticket has been scratched, it's worth a buck. Once you scratch it, it's worthless (most of the time). Same should apply to contracts, in my opinion. Teams who made the playoffs, their players had contacts that paid off. All other were a sunk cost. We paid Felix and Paxton 100% too much for the end result.

Unless of course WAR value is actually calculated using ticket and jersey sales...


I believe it was the younger guy that posited these guys might be better off signing 1 year deals to be around next year.  With teams planning on having big money available for next years better class, the teams that lose out will have money to spend.  There's good sense in that.

Hanjag's picture

MLBTR Had a poll on pillow deals for the top 50 and the results indicated people thought multiple top 50 FAs would take the one year deal. 

The Seattle Times baseball forum has a prolific poster "DT" and he had something published about Jerry stating that the M's rotation was set and was capable of up with anybody in the AL. Rightfully, DT wrote the Times and called JD out as being dilusional.



I don't usually like to link sites on other fan sites or blogs other than for crediting sources but forgive me. 

I do believe that most of us agreed that in some order of need at the off-set of the off-season there were these needs





I always pushed that creating JOhnson-Schilling was they biggest priority. The fact that 2 years ago Paxton lled the AL in Fip and last year put up 4.6 WAR in 2/3 a season vouches for Paxton being 1/2 that duo. Otani could have been the 2nd part or in my case I wanted to double down and grab Darvish and Otani and have 3 aces on 2 #2,#3 types in Leake and Felix. I wanted Cain as a 5 WAR 5 tool guy but can settle for Gordon as a 3WAR 3.5 tool guy. I like the trade for Healy more than most. I look on him as a 1 to 2 WAR guy and place about as much confidence in him @ those numbers as all the 1B types spare 20MM dollar guy the Phillies signed. I never put stock into needing to add to the BP. The M's had a better than average BP before the adds. 

There are super teams forming right now in today's baseball much like you see in the NBA. The thing is is that so many teams are tanking because of the perception that there is no chance to add enough to your club to contend that has forced teams sell off stars and by doing so there is less of a market for the next team looking to sell off parts. 

I swear it always seems to be the case that Seattle GMs seem to be constantly caught off-guard by market fluctuations. I remember JZ being caught off guard stating Top 100 prospects and prospects in general were once the coin of the rhealm and that these CC assets gained much value if they had been "baptized" even for a bit of MLB action. 

Right now I could make the arguement that the M's are pretty much even-steven with a handfull of team for the last WC slot but that there are so many top FAs available I can almost promiuse Minny adds pitching, LAA with a Lynn, Darvish or Cobb moves way out front. 

Seattle is so head-ache 90's fiasco all-over. How did you screw up and not win a WS with those late 90's teams? Best Pitcher in Baseball RJ. Does anybody else remember that Roger Clemons was rumored to want to team up with Randy in Seattle? But after 95 with a 135 OPS+ turned in by Tino and starting to get pricey Seattle deals of Tino for peanuts. 2 years later Tino was #2 in MVP. How can you have 3 generational talants ( Griffey, ARod, RJ) on the cheap and not win a WS? The M's Had Buhner, Tino, EDGAR<--HOF, Wilson, Moyer, and many other good players come and go in the late 90's Paul Sorrento, Fassero, Cora, Segui, and others. I am sorry but I play armchair GM like many of you and I think I could have made the M's with that core a WS winner. Not trade RJ do the Griffey trade either extend Arod or trade him for a Griffey haul and still add Ichiro and Boone and we could be talking dynasty vs backwater.  

Point is you are paying for Cano, Cruz, Seager, some pricey BP parts, Segura, Felix, Gordon, add Darvish and you have the ability to get to and win in the post season. The M's can add and should.


I appreciate you letting me vent.


An interesting short article in the Dallas Morning News. Interesting what a sudden high probablity of moving to San Antonio in a couple of weeks will do to your online reading habits.

The article is about GM Jon Daniels' take on the Texas Rangers' approach to the competitiveness of the team in the grand scheme of things. His approach of building a team in such a way that there is a chance of success, of it being enough to aspire to playing for a playoff spot at the end of the season, sounds a lot like the Seattle Mariners' historic approach, and the current approach of Jerry DiPoto. I guess the Rangers are just better at executing it.

Daniels says:

"Playing for a playoff spot late in the year and go from there. I'm not Al Davis or George Steinbrenner, I'm not sitting here saying it's all or nothing - do we want to win a World Series? Absolutely. Will we be the team picked to win? No. 

"I get it.

"But you can improve over the course of the season. You can improve over the course of spring training. Things change. It's not a static situation. And so when I say I expect we're going to be a contending team, that's what I mean. I think that we're going to put ourselves into position - whether that's January, February, March, into the season - where we continually get better, where our players on the field get better, where our roster gets better via additions both internal and external. 

"When there are things that the front office and the coaching staff can do to push us forward to where, over the course of the season, we put ourself in position to be in the playoffs. As things happen, plus or minus, we'll adjust along the way. That's the name of the game. 

"But regardless of what different publications say or think, we believe that if we do things well on our end, we take care of what we need to take care of that good things can happen this season for us."

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