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Sunday, February 06, 2005

AP: Source: Tigers agree to $75 million deal with Ordonez

Finally some hard numbers. Read the full article for the terms and out clauses…

Under the complicated deal, Detroit would have the right to void the contract after the 2005 season if…[Ordonez’ left knee] lands him on the disabled list for 25 days or more.

The 31-year-old Ordonez gets a $6 million signing bonus and a $6 million salary in 2005, meaning the Tigers’ exposure is $12 million. His contract calls for a $15 million salary in 2006, $12 million in 2007, $15 million in 2008 and $18 million in 2009. Detroit has a $15 million option for 2010 with a $3 million buyout, and a $15 million option for 2011 with no buyout.

NTNgod Posted: February 06, 2005 at 02:39 AM | 52 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. Buddha Posted: February 06, 2005 at 02:42 AM (#1127422)
Let the ######## begin.
   2. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: February 06, 2005 at 02:48 AM (#1127434)
Buddha, I'm with you here, but you're developing something resembling a Persecution Complex
   3. 1k5v3L Posted: February 06, 2005 at 02:55 AM (#1127451)
As a fan of the Dbacks, I feel Buddha's pain.
   4. The Original Gary Posted: February 06, 2005 at 02:58 AM (#1127455)
Holy Crap.

Boras is the new PT Barnum.
   5. Sam M. Posted: February 06, 2005 at 03:05 AM (#1127461)
Two things. First, if there is controversy over an attempt by the Tigers to put Ordonez on the DL in 2005, where he says he doesn't need to and can play, it could get very, very ugly. Second, I'm stunned that they got (if this is accurate) an out clause only for 2005. Wow. So if Ordonez makes it through 2005 OK, the rest of it becomes guaranteed, even if it develops that the knee is deteriorating and he's a shell of himself shortly thereafter? I thought sure there would be a series of voiding clauses, not just one covering the first year.
   6. Brandon in MO (Yunitility Infielder) Posted: February 06, 2005 at 03:05 AM (#1127462)
$18M at 35?

HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA
   7. fables of the deconstruction Posted: February 06, 2005 at 03:12 AM (#1127468)
Under the complicated deal, Detroit would have the right to void the contract after the 2005 season if...[Ordonez' left knee] lands him on the disabled list for 25 days or more.

Something tells me that this is the "best" upside potential for this deal. Otherwise the Kitties will be swallowing tail for the remaining four years of his contract...

giggle... giggle... *gag*

-----------
trevise :-) ...
   8. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: February 06, 2005 at 03:13 AM (#1127469)
<i. First, if there is controversy over an attempt by the Tigers to put Ordonez on the DL in 2005, where he says he doesn't need to and can play, it could get very, very ugly.</i>

I was thinking the same thing. If he struggles, there's going to be a real temptation to put him on the DL and get out of the rest of the contract. This is a lot more at stake than a lot of those contracts with $100K-$500K bonuses for starts or appearances, and clubs try to weasel their way out of those as well.

Eh, I hope Ordonez plays well and justifies the contract. I actually like the Tigers -- part of the old guard of baseball. I find a hard time rooting against the teams who have been in place since 1901, particularly those (like the Cubs) who haven't always shown themselves to be paragons of success.
   9. fables of the deconstruction Posted: February 06, 2005 at 03:17 AM (#1127471)
I'm stunned that they got (if this is accurate) an out clause only for 2005. Wow. So if Ordonez makes it through 2005 OK, the rest of it becomes guaranteed, even if it develops that the knee is deteriorating and he's a shell of himself shortly thereafter? I thought sure there would be a series of voiding clauses, not just one covering the first year.

DAMN! Sam beat me to the point... I beatcha in "enigma factor" though...! ;-) ...

-----------
trevise :-) ...
   10. Tim D Posted: February 06, 2005 at 03:29 AM (#1127485)
We still don't know what's really in Pudge's contract and we probably will never really know what's in this one. Dombrowski is not an idiot; there has to be some upside for the Tigers here. Boras has long been known to blow his horn about how great his deals are. There are probably a lot more clauses in this contract. The stuff in the AP release isn't "complicated" at all. If they have any lawyers worth a d### (and they do) the contingencies for if and when Magglio gets hurt are probably already worked out. It's way too big a deal. For the Detroit fans it's a lot better than the perpetual "building within the system." They hired a new draft guy and probably overpaid him as well. At least they are doing something. A decent season (let alone contention)and they make 75 mil in one year. The Tigers could draw 3 mil if they were actually good. Ask the Indians.
   11. NTNgod Posted: February 06, 2005 at 03:31 AM (#1127492)
Of course those Cubs fans who may have been harboring secret hopes Ordonez would sign a 1yr deal to stay in Chicago now have to face the reality of their outfield situation :)

Wow, that's a long sentence.
   12. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: February 06, 2005 at 03:32 AM (#1127493)
Those hopes were dashed with the Burnitz signing.
   13. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: February 06, 2005 at 03:44 AM (#1127516)
But, like Sam M, I have grave doubts he'll be an effective player through the length of the contract.

At least they're an AL team so he can be useful even if unable to play defense. We'll see if it does anything to his hitting. The legs are involved there too.
   14. Walt Davis Posted: February 06, 2005 at 03:59 AM (#1127530)
I wouldn't give him 5/$75 if he was healthy.

More than Beltre? More than Drew? More than Delgado?

If the Tigers are lucky, they'll be out only about $12 M -- either in that they void the contract after this season or he stays healthy, plays up to what could have been expected if he was healthy and have been worth maybe 5/$63. I doubt the latter will happen but you never know.

The worst case scenario is that he tears up his right knee this year.
   15. Buddha Posted: February 06, 2005 at 04:03 AM (#1127532)
"Buddha, I'm with you here, but you're developing something resembling a Persecution Complex"

"Developing"? : )
   16. DCA Posted: February 06, 2005 at 04:04 AM (#1127534)


The worst case scenario is that he tears up his right knee this year.


I think that's the best case scenario. This is a stinker -- he's not worth the money even if he's healthy, so whatever can be done to keep him from getting paid past '05, that's the best thing that can happen.
   17. NTNgod Posted: February 06, 2005 at 04:06 AM (#1127539)
I think that's the best case scenario.

The right knee is the healthy one.
If he tears that up, the Tigers still have to pay, which was his point :)
   18. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: February 06, 2005 at 04:07 AM (#1127541)
Of course those Cubs fans who may have been harboring secret hopes Ordonez would sign a 1yr deal to stay in Chicago now have to face the reality of their outfield situation :)

That boat sailed last week. We've already got an abundance of questionable OFs -- adding one more would have just been crazy.
   19. 1k5v3L Posted: February 06, 2005 at 04:10 AM (#1127546)
Someone mentioned that Higgy might be released by DET as a consequence of this move (maybe rotoworld?). Does anyone know anything more about this? And what kind of a player is he these days?
   20. good_ol_gil Posted: February 06, 2005 at 04:14 AM (#1127550)
Does a player have to agree to be put on the DL?

In football you have to sign something to be put on IR, at least according to a Playmakers episode.
   21. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: February 06, 2005 at 04:18 AM (#1127554)
Who else bid anything _close_ to this contract?

Thats a ridiculous contract for a guy who may not have a knee on one leg.
   22. Buddha Posted: February 06, 2005 at 04:20 AM (#1127558)
"Thats a ridiculous contract for a guy who may not have a knee on one leg."

You think they might have checked that before he signed the contract? Nyah, I'm sure they did it sight-unseen.
   23. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: February 06, 2005 at 04:27 AM (#1127565)
And what kind of a player is he these days?

Grumpy and mediocre
   24. Old Matt Posted: February 06, 2005 at 04:40 AM (#1127582)
And we have a winner!
   25. Tim D Posted: February 06, 2005 at 04:44 AM (#1127585)
You'd think Higginson would at least be happy to get $9 mil or whatever for putting up an OPS of .742.

Ordonez will unfortunately probably be a similar albatross by 2009, 2010, etc. The rest of his body (including the right knee) is likely insurable, so there's that comfort. The scary part is that bone marrow edema is known to hasten the onset of osetoarhritis. That doesn't a) come on within one season, or b) help one play RF.

All that said the Tigers add an All-Star bat and their fans love it. Surges in attendance can pay a lot of salaries.
   26. Tim D Posted: February 06, 2005 at 04:57 AM (#1127600)
Actually now that I think about it, Higginson at his worst is better than Alex Sanchez at his best. Put Higgy in CF and bat him leadoff. He'd probably even be better on D than Sanchez.
   27. Evil Umpire Posted: February 06, 2005 at 07:35 AM (#1127793)
Maggs used to be my favorite player in all of baseball, until Aaron Rowand displaced him this past year.

Yet, even I feel that this is a bad contract, even though Guillen/Pudge/Maggs/White/Young in the middle of a lineup scares the hell out of me. That said, if a couple of pitchers step ut this year (Bonderman, Ledezma), the Tigers could really pose a threat in the weak AL Central...
   28. fra paolo Posted: February 06, 2005 at 11:36 AM (#1127914)
a) It's not my money.
b) The Tigers are not small market. (But they are not big market, either).
c) IIRC, the Tigers don't have anyone who projects to be much better than Ordonez in the minors.

It's a fearsome gamble by the Tigers. What really bothers me about all this is that it appears that nowadays there appears to be a ‘Detroit premium’ that must be paid to free agents. I know it is isn't the most wonderful city in North America, but if you told me I could do a job I love, for an above-average salary, and enough extra money that I could protect my children from the awful school system, I wouldn't demand even more. I guess that's why I'm not a winner.

Incidentally, I'm extremely concerned by this winter's Primer experience of constantly comparing salaries against the value of a marginal wins, which takes me back to points (a) and (b) above. Really, are we becoming obsessive bean counters like those financial guys who are sending jobs to South Asia or wherever in order to compete in the global marketplace? Shouldn't we be arguing that the minimum salary ought to be raised, rather than the top end depressed? After all, it is these kids who have a better value than the market appreciates.

I'll bet most of us are more likely to benefit from that kind of attitude, than embracing a managerial culture that pushes salaries down and throws 40+-years-old into deskilled underemployment because they can get a younger person for less.
   29. 6 - 4 - 3 Posted: February 06, 2005 at 01:21 PM (#1127931)
Does a player have to agree to be put on the DL?


No, but he can request a second opinion from a qualified doctor and there's some complex procedure for players to protest DL placement or extended rehab assignments. I forget the details, but generally speaking its more or less the club's call. But with $60M or whatever riding on the whether he goes to the DL, it could be a very messy midseason controversy.
   30. no neck Posted: February 06, 2005 at 01:38 PM (#1127936)
I'm a bit surprised that Maggs got this contract with the bum knee. Looks like the owner will have to sell a few more of his lousy pizzas.

If healthy Maggs will be a force for the Tigers, his hr numbers will probably drop of a bit because of Comerica's dimensions.

After Monday's presser I don't think you'll hear another peep out of Ordonez. He might get a local Pepsi commercial or something, but for the most part he is quiet as a church mouse......thankfully.
   31. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 06, 2005 at 01:41 PM (#1127938)
If they have any lawyers worth a d### (and they do) the contingencies for if and when Magglio gets hurt are probably already worked out. It's way too big a deal.

This got me thinking; do players have lawyers to represent their interests vis a vis their agents? In this example, Boras makes money off the contact Ordonez signs with the Tigers. The Tigers presumably have lawyers crafting language protecting them against a loss. Does Ordonez have the same WRT Boras?
   32. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: February 06, 2005 at 01:45 PM (#1127941)
This got me thinking; do players have lawyers to represent their interests vis a vis their agents? In this example, Boras makes money off the contact Ordonez signs with the Tigers. The Tigers presumably have lawyers crafting language protecting them against a loss. Does Ordonez have the same WRT Boras?

I'm sure Ordonez had his own attorney review the initial contract that he signed with Boras giving Boras the right to represent him in negotiations. But I doubt that lawyer actually also consults on the team contracts themselves -- that's (presumably) what Boras is for.

In the Ordonez-Boras contract, there should be some language that holds Boras to a duty of good faith (or something like that) in his dealings with the teams, such that the player isn't getting screwed while the agent gets paid.
   33. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 06, 2005 at 01:53 PM (#1127945)
Thanks UCCF. What I was getting at, is there generally some blanket agreement that Boras doesn't get paid unless Ordonez does, wrt all the outs the Tigers have? That Boras's compensation is also contingent on Ortdonez' knee, and that if Ordonez only gets 12 mil or so, Boras gets the same cut of that regardless of whether it was a stand alone 12 mil deal, or a part of a 75 mil deal.
   34. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: February 06, 2005 at 02:05 PM (#1127953)
What I was getting at, is there generally some blanket agreement that Boras doesn't get paid unless Ordonez does, wrt all the outs the Tigers have?

Probably. Most agency contracts like this work where the agent gets a percentage of the athlete's salary (say 10-15%). If Ordonez were to lose the money because of his knee, then Boras should lose it as well.

Of course Boras is in the position (as top muckymuck among agents) to demand a better deal for himself than Joe Agent might get. So perhaps there is something in the contract between him and Ordonez that provides Boras to get paid if Ordonez does something that voids his contract.

For example, consider Denny Neagle. His actions cost him the last $20M (or whatever it was) the Rockies owed him (at least in theory right now). That would also mean that his agent loses out on about $2M, give or take. Would the agent have recourse against the player for his actions? It's an interesting idea to which I don't know the answer -- whatever it would be would be strictly grounded in the terms of the player-agent contract.
   35. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 06, 2005 at 02:28 PM (#1127964)
Thanks. So, to sum up, a player signs a contract with an agent. That contract, among other things, specifies how, when, and under what circumstances the agent will be compensated. Presumably, the player has a disinterested third party review the contract on his behalf before signing. After that, whatever the agent does on the player's behalf, must be within the bounds set by the player-agent contract. Any deviation must be negotiated separately, and again would be reviewed by a (diffenert) agent for the player.

Is that about right?
   36. JB H Posted: February 06, 2005 at 02:31 PM (#1127965)
I'm pretty sure Boras gets paid some sort of hourly rate, and gets paid the same no matter what his client signs for.
   37. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: February 06, 2005 at 02:41 PM (#1127977)
I'm pretty sure Boras gets paid some sort of hourly rate, and gets paid the same no matter what his client signs for.

So you don't think he's getting a percentage of the contract? I'm sure there's an underlying rate for his work as well, but I'd be surprised if he's not also taking home a taste of what he gets for his clients.
   38. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: February 06, 2005 at 02:44 PM (#1127980)
This is from an article in the Cincinnati Enquirer last month:

BORAS BUCKS: Scott Boras, the noted agent, had an unusually large number of clients in the free-agent market this offseason. Seven of his 16 clients have signed new contracts.

They include some of the highest-paid players on the market: Carlos Beltran, Adrian Beltre, J.D. Drew, Jason Varitek and Derek Lowe.

With those five players signing for an aggregate of $314 million, Boras' seven signed clients have signed for $322.8 million.

At five percent, that puts Boras' fees at $16.14 million. He will not get all of the money at once. Players pay their agents' fees as they are paid.
   39. JB H Posted: February 06, 2005 at 02:58 PM (#1127982)
I just remember from the whole ARod saga last year that Boras said at some point that he had no interest in keeping ARod's deal from being devalued because he gets paid by the hour and not by the contracts his clients get.
   40. Hendry's Wad of Cash (UCCF) Posted: February 06, 2005 at 03:02 PM (#1127984)
I just remember from the whole ARod saga last year that Boras said at some point that he had no interest in keeping ARod's deal from being devalued because he gets paid by the hour and not by the contracts his clients get.

Hmm. Seems like we have conflicting information (I have no reason not to believe your story, but it's different from what the newspaper says). I'll see what else I can find out.
   41. yl_adam Posted: February 06, 2005 at 03:25 PM (#1127988)
I just remember from the whole ARod saga last year that Boras said at some point that he had no interest in keeping ARod's deal from being devalued because he gets paid by the hour and not by the contracts his clients get.

This is Scott Boras, he lies a lot. He may have said that because he thought it would benefit him in some way, especially since he probably had a pretty good inkling that the MLBPA wouldn't allow a devaluing of the contract.
   42. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: February 06, 2005 at 06:57 PM (#1128315)
You think they might have checked that before he signed the contract? Nyah, I'm sure they did it sight-unseen.

Considering that Maggs wouldn't let any team inspect his knee, I would be surprised if the Tigers inspected it.
   43. Buddha Posted: February 06, 2005 at 07:22 PM (#1128379)
"Considering that Maggs wouldn't let any team inspect his knee, I would be surprised if the Tigers inspected it."

From today's Detroit News:

"The Tigers -- backed by owner Mike Ilitch, who was part of an aggressive push for Ordonez - have done their own in-house research that apparently included a first-hand inspection of Ordonez Thursday during a scheduled workout in California."

Surprise.
   44. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: February 06, 2005 at 08:06 PM (#1128466)
Surprise.

I do not see where it says they did a medical examination of his knee.
   45. Buddha Posted: February 06, 2005 at 08:28 PM (#1128506)
Now you're just picking nits. Do you really think it was Mike Illitch out there looking at Ordonez's knee?

What do you think a "first-hand inspection" is?

Does everyone on this site think they're smarter than everyone who runs a major league baseball team?
   46. mr. man Posted: February 06, 2005 at 08:45 PM (#1128543)
what a snake-oil salesman boras is.

and i love how they say that beltran was never an option...for the combined price of maggs and percival, they could have outbid everyone else.
   47. mr. man Posted: February 06, 2005 at 08:49 PM (#1128547)
buddha, this is the beer and tacos argument...

most of us on this site realize that we'll never be running major league teams, because most of us lack the baseball knowledge to understand some of the finer points of the game that a GM or a manager has to have.

that said, i think most people on this site could really help about half the teams in the majors because they make moves like this that are simply bad ideas that could have been prevented with even a bit of solid statistical/medhead analysis.
   48. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: February 06, 2005 at 10:49 PM (#1128724)
Now you're just picking nits.

I don't think questioning a rather large signing of a player who underwent fairly unusual knee treatment, then refused to let anyone look at the knee, is picking nits.

What do you think a "first-hand inspection" is?

From the previous posturing by Boras, a first hand inspection was a workout that included Maggs running around, shagging balls, swinging in the cage, running the bases.

Does everyone on this site think they're smarter than everyone who runs a major league baseball team?

No. But I think this signing was fairly dangerous if they didn't get a chance to medically inspect the knee, and there have been zero reports about the Tigers inspecting his knee.
   49. Tim D Posted: February 07, 2005 at 02:30 AM (#1129395)
Boras has at least one hot #### lawyer working for him. Probably more.

If the Tigers signed Ordonez w/out an orthopedist getting a look at the knee then they deserve whatever happens. I tend to think they did but they forced Boras to agree to keep it quiet lest more teams get into the bidding. Not that anybody was going to bid more than 5/75. I would rather have had Drew for the same money. But they should be better at least in the short run.
   50. Walt Davis Posted: February 07, 2005 at 06:01 AM (#1129781)
have done their own in-house research that apparently included a first-hand inspection of Ordonez Thursday during a scheduled workout in California

What do you think a "first-hand inspection" is?


Well, the quote says that the "first-hand inspection" took place during a workout. Unless they had an MRI machine at the workout, I'm thinking that does not constitute a medical exam.

Now I too would be surprised that the Tigers would do this deal without giving him a full medical exam. But that story suggests they didn't.
   51. billfer Posted: February 07, 2005 at 10:57 AM (#1130042)
No. But I think this signing was fairly dangerous if they didn't get a chance to medically inspect the knee, and there have been zero reports about the Tigers inspecting his knee.

But there also hasn't been a single report coming from the Tigers themselves. Given that Ordonez will have to pass a physical (if he hasn't already), I'd trust that team physicians will get a very good look at the knee.

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