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Monday, November 05, 2012

Josh Hamilton’s Asking Price Is Seven Years, $175MM: MLB Rumors - MLBTradeRumors.com

That’s a lot of cash for a guy with his issues.

Josh Hamilton, ranked second on MLBTR’s Top 50 Free Agent List, is said to be looking for a seven-year contract worth $175MM, tweets John Perrotto of Baseball Prospectus (h/t the Dallas Morning News)

Jim Furtado Posted: November 05, 2012 at 09:47 AM | 54 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: free agency, josh hamilton, rangers

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   1. Spivey Posted: November 05, 2012 at 09:57 AM (#4293118)
Well, I sure as hell hope he isn't getting that from the Rangers. I'd be ok with a deal similar to what Beltre got, but it's highly unlikely that is going to happen.
   2. The_Ex Posted: November 05, 2012 at 10:06 AM (#4293119)
What a coincidence, that's my asking price too. Gotta start high and let them negotiate me down.
   3. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: November 05, 2012 at 10:07 AM (#4293120)
hamilton strikes me as a dead ringer for junior griffey. big guy who some team will keep in centerfield past his expiration date and only after so many injuries and lost games force the issue.

unless a team gets buy in from josh about playing right field/left field/first base as part of the deal in advance teams should stay away. great players are pretty stubborn at times about position changes and it is a huge headache for everyone.
   4. SteveF Posted: November 05, 2012 at 10:08 AM (#4293122)
Outlook doubtful.
   5. Swoboda is freedom Posted: November 05, 2012 at 10:15 AM (#4293124)
Outlook doubtful.

Prognosis Negative!!
   6. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: November 05, 2012 at 10:16 AM (#4293126)
That doesn't look like a terribly unreasonable starting point to me. That gives him some room to give and take his way to ~6/140 without scaring teams off with a 9/225 request or something ridiculous like that.
   7. Tom Nawrocki Posted: November 05, 2012 at 10:21 AM (#4293129)
I wonder what the Rockies will counter with. Oh, right: Nothing.
   8. BDC Posted: November 05, 2012 at 10:24 AM (#4293133)
unless a team gets buy in from josh about playing right field/left field/first base

Hamilton has played a lot of LF for the Rangers, and never seemed sulky about it. If a team has anything approaching an adequate CF, Josh shouldn't even see the position now except from a distance. He's already a liability in center.

First base would be a stretch. I know one prevailing sabermetric theory is that 1B is at the end of the continuum and that any able-bodied player should find it the easiest position. But Hamilton has never played a professional inning in the infield. He's aggressive and fearless, but to my mind he is one of those players, like Barry Bonds or Ted Williams, who is better off not having to think about every pitch of the game, as a first baseman must. He is fast enough on his feet, as an outfielder must be (although a step slower now than even in 2010), but "good hands" and minor quick adjustments are not really part of his repertoire. I just don't think the experiment would work well.

I wish the guy well, but you're right, Harv, seven years from now he's going to be spending a lot more time on the training table and the disabled list than at any baseball position.
   9. AROM Posted: November 05, 2012 at 10:29 AM (#4293136)
unless a team gets buy in from josh about playing right field/left field/first base as part of the deal in advance teams should stay away. great players are pretty stubborn at times about position changes and it is a huge headache for everyone.


Hamilton played more in CF last year for whatever reason, but in 2010-11 he played more in left. Over the last 3 seasons about 1/3 of his OF innings have been as a center fielder. I don't see any reason to think he'll start demanding to play center now.
   10. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: November 05, 2012 at 10:33 AM (#4293138)
bob/arom

thanks. just confirming. because ballplayers can be 'twitchy' about such things.

i think anything beyond four years is crazy but clearly in the market that just won't fly since 'somebody' will cave and sign him way past what is sensible
   11. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: November 05, 2012 at 10:44 AM (#4293146)
I assume he'll get something like 6/$120-$130, so that does seem like a reasonable starting point.
   12. bookbook Posted: November 05, 2012 at 10:53 AM (#4293152)
I know that wasn't your point, but Hamilton isn't in Griffey's league, especially as a defender.
   13. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: November 05, 2012 at 11:16 AM (#4293177)
book

the gist was specific to a big guy playing a demanding defensive position and said position lending itself to greater chance for injury which in turn cuts into playing time whic in turn makes a big contract riskier
   14. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: November 05, 2012 at 11:22 AM (#4293187)
That's a little unfair to Hamilton. Griffey was a great defender when he was in his early and mid 20s, not so much later on. Hamilton didn't play full time until he was, what, 27? Given his incredible athleticism, it's not unreasonable to think that he could have been a terrific defensive CF as a healthy 22 year old.
   15. tshipman Posted: November 05, 2012 at 11:23 AM (#4293188)
I actually don't think this is a crazy number. He's somewhat likely to receive this total amount--although obviously there will likely be opt-outs and all other kinds of inclusions.

Josh Hamilton at 25 million per year is not a terrible contract. It's around 5 million per win, with upside and downside. I don't want the Giants anywhere near it, but it's not explicitly terrible like Prince's contract was.
   16. McCoy Posted: November 05, 2012 at 11:25 AM (#4293196)
I think the contracts that are going to get handed out over the next two offseasons are going to shock a lot of people.
   17. puck Posted: November 05, 2012 at 11:57 AM (#4293245)
I wonder what the Rockies will counter with. Oh, right: Nothing.

At first, I thought he'd be great in Colorado. He'd hit like crazy at Coors Field, and the non-denominational Christian thing has a lot of support here. Then I thought, there's a crapload of bars around the stadium, and the state looks like it's about to legalize marijuana. So I don't know.

But yeah, they'd never pay that type of dough.
   18. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 05, 2012 at 12:19 PM (#4293265)
I wish the guy well, but you're right, Harv, seven years from now he's going to be spending a lot more time on the training table and the disabled list than at any baseball position
.

You and Harvey have a reasonable position. But I would actually bet the other way, specifically that the lack of baseball wear/tear in his 20s is really going to help him stay healthy and effective well into his 30s. I think that Hamilton has already overcome tremendous odds to basically become a star player after missing his development stage, and I think it would be a mistake to write him off as 'just another' star player. If ever there was a player to bet on in his 30s, I think Hamilton is it.
   19. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: November 05, 2012 at 12:23 PM (#4293270)
You and Harvey have a reasonable position. But I would actually bet the other way, specifically that the lack of baseball wear/tear in his 20s is really going to help him stay healthy and effective well into his 30s. I think that Hamilton has already overcome tremendous odds to basically become a star player after missing his development stage, and I think it would be a mistake to write him off as 'just another' star player. If ever there was a player to bet on in his 30s, I think Hamilton is it.


You're right about what Hamilton has done being pretty amazing. I hadn't thought of it that way but now I'm wondering just how good he could have been.

On the other hand I disagree that the lack of baseball wear&tear; being beneficial. I just can't imagine that what he did to his body during those years is better for him than playing baseball would have been.
   20. Bruce Chen's Huge Panamanian Robot Posted: November 05, 2012 at 12:23 PM (#4293271)
For a guy who's an emotional train wreck and constantly injured, that's pretty absurd.
   21. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 05, 2012 at 01:21 PM (#4293350)
For a guy who's an emotional train wreck and constantly injured, that's pretty absurd.


Over the last three seasons he's played in 402 games and had 15 oWAR.

That's an average of 134 games and 5 oWAR per season. And the missed time in 2011 was mostly due to a fluke injury on a slide into home, not a chronic injury.
   22. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: November 05, 2012 at 01:31 PM (#4293364)
Then I thought, there's a crapload of bars around the stadium, and the state looks like it's about to legalize marijuana. So I don't know.


There are stadiums without craploads of bars around them? Hamilton would have no problem living in Denver.
   23. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: November 05, 2012 at 01:42 PM (#4293387)
You and Harvey have a reasonable position. But I would actually bet the other way, specifically that the lack of baseball wear/tear in his 20s is really going to help him stay healthy and effective well into his 30s. I think that Hamilton has already overcome tremendous odds to basically become a star player after missing his development stage, and I think it would be a mistake to write him off as 'just another' star player. If ever there was a player to bet on in his 30s, I think Hamilton is it.

What #19 said:

On the other hand I disagree that the lack of baseball wear&tear; being beneficial. I just can't imagine that what he did to his body during those years is better for him than playing baseball would have been.


Also, since arriving in Texas Hamilton has played 129 games/season. The first year brings up that average, the second year brings it down. But this is a guy who despite having very little *baseball* wear-and-tear on his body has not been particularly durable. 7 years seems like a long time although I wouldn't be surprised if someone gives it to him.
   24. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: November 05, 2012 at 01:57 PM (#4293414)
There are stadiums without craploads of bars around them?
There ain't #### around CitiField, except chop shops.
   25. DL from MN Posted: November 05, 2012 at 02:00 PM (#4293421)
I think the contracts that are going to get handed out over the next two offseasons are going to shock a lot of people.


I think the union needs to insist on a $1M minimum salary in the next set of negotiations.
   26. BDC Posted: November 05, 2012 at 02:07 PM (#4293431)
There are stadiums without craploads of bars around them?

A few blocks away from the Ballpark in Arlington, just south of Cowboys Stadium on Division Street, there's a high concentration of dive bars, some of them dating back to when the street was US 80, the Mother Road of the South. Doesn't seem to have affected Hamilton (his relapses in '09 and '12 happened in Arizona and in North Dallas, respectively).
   27. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: November 05, 2012 at 02:07 PM (#4293432)

There are stadiums without craploads of bars around them?

Someone above mentioned Citifield. I don't remember much of anything around Dodger Stadium, or Citizens Bank Ballpark in Philly, although it's been a while since I've been to either.

Hamilton would have no problem living in Denver.

This part I agree with. Every city has places to get drunk/high or acquire the means to do so, especially if you're making $25 million a year. And a bar near the stadium is the place I would least expect to find Josh Hamilton getting wasted.
   28. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: November 05, 2012 at 02:14 PM (#4293442)
Citizens Bank Ballpark in Philly, although it's been a while since I've been to either.

There are a few venues now, including at lease one attached to the ball park.
   29. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: November 05, 2012 at 02:19 PM (#4293449)
i think whatever hamilton gained in not playing his body suffered from what he 'was' doing to his physical form.

and no, i am not judging the guy. but one cannot discount that he wasn't doing his body any favors during his 'bad times'

   30. valuearbitrageur Posted: November 05, 2012 at 02:27 PM (#4293456)
and the state looks like it's about to legalize marijuana


So CA teams and AZ are out too?

It doesn't matter if a state "legalizes" marijuana to a baseball player, I'm pretty sure prescription or not they aren't allowed to imbibe and will still be drug tested.

For example, you & I can get amphetamine prescriptions. Hamilton can't and expect to pass a drug test.

And legal or not, all drugs are available to anyone with a few $20 bills.
   31. Nasty Nate Posted: November 05, 2012 at 02:31 PM (#4293462)
It doesn't matter if a state "legalizes" marijuana to a baseball player, I'm pretty sure prescription or not they aren't allowed to imbibe and will still be drug tested.

For example, you & I can get amphetamine prescriptions. Hamilton can't and expect to pass a drug test.


Players with amphetamine prescriptions can get exemptions to be allowed to take it.
   32. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: November 05, 2012 at 02:40 PM (#4293474)
So CA teams and AZ are out too?


And Seattle!

I actually think Seattle would be a pretty great destination for Hamilton. Low-key city, low expectations, rich - it makes sense.
   33. Tom Nawrocki Posted: November 05, 2012 at 02:48 PM (#4293482)
Then I thought, there's a crapload of bars around the stadium, and the state looks like it's about to legalize marijuana.


There is already a crapload of marijuana dispensaries around Coors Field.
   34. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: November 05, 2012 at 02:56 PM (#4293493)
Players with amphetamine prescriptions can get exemptions to be allowed to take it.


This. I'm not sure what the case would be for a player with a marijuana prescription would be, though I wouldn't be shocked if MLB opposed still wouldn't let them use it.
   35. andrewberg Posted: November 05, 2012 at 02:57 PM (#4293495)
Citizens Bank Ballpark in Philly, although it's been a while since I've been to either.

There are a few venues now, including at lease one attached to the ball park.


He could also hop the taxi crab up to Chickie's and Pete's.
   36. Perry Posted: November 05, 2012 at 03:26 PM (#4293518)
There are stadiums without craploads of bars around them? Hamilton would have no problem living in Denver.


IIRC, the only thing anywhere near Royals Stadium is a Denny's.
   37. Ned Garvin: Male Prostitute Posted: November 05, 2012 at 03:28 PM (#4293522)
I actually think Seattle would be a pretty great destination for Hamilton. Low-key city, low expectations, rich - it makes sense.


I have thought this for a few months now, but also for the Mariners. They have a ton of good pitching coming up through the minors, but they can't hit and need OF. They have the money. I think this is actually the best fit of any team, but who knows if the M's will cough up the dough, or if some other team will pay some silly amount.
   38. Poster Nutbag Posted: November 05, 2012 at 03:42 PM (#4293540)
IIRC, the only thing anywhere near Royals Stadium is a Denny's.


Yeah, but think of the coffee....can he stay away from those....are there any liqour stores/gas stations nearby selling Red Bull?
   39. Blubaldo Jimenez (OMJ) Posted: November 05, 2012 at 04:58 PM (#4293616)
Players with amphetamine prescriptions can get exemptions to be allowed to take it.


This. I'm not sure what the case would be for a player with a marijuana prescription would be, though I wouldn't be shocked if MLB opposed still wouldn't let them use it.


Players on the 40 man are not subjected to random marijuana tests, only test for "just cause."
   40. something like a train wreck Posted: November 05, 2012 at 05:21 PM (#4293634)
It seems that Texas can't wait to get rid of him. That would worry me.
   41. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 05, 2012 at 05:33 PM (#4293653)
i think whatever hamilton gained in not playing his body suffered from what he 'was' doing to his physical form.

and no, i am not judging the guy. but one cannot discount that he wasn't doing his body any favors during his 'bad times'


Plausible and reasonable, Harvey. But all of us are guessing about this.
   42. Rough Carrigan Posted: November 05, 2012 at 06:22 PM (#4293721)
He got two synvisc injections into his knees this past year. That makes giving him a 7 year and $175 million contract real questionable.
   43. Rough Carrigan Posted: November 05, 2012 at 06:43 PM (#4293742)
Barely relevant to this discussion, but at the press conference announcing his new 2 year contract, David Ortiz was asked about Bobby Valentine implying that he had quit on the team.

He said three things, the first two were his recounting the history of events. Here's the third:

No. 3, after he went on national TV to say what he said, he sent me a text message trying to tell me that it was the media trying to change things. I did not respond to the message and I said to myself, this guy must have some mental issues or needs medicine or something? I said, I am dealing with someone crazy and I am not going to drive myself crazy, so it is better if I leave it alone."
   44. DL from MN Posted: November 05, 2012 at 06:45 PM (#4293744)
Players on the 40 man are not subjected to random marijuana tests


Good point. I imagine if it were legalized it would soon be bargained OUT of the CBA.
   45. valuearbitrageur Posted: November 05, 2012 at 07:08 PM (#4293760)
Players with amphetamine prescriptions can get exemptions to be allowed to take it.


I humbly accept the correction. But how often does the MLB give out exemptions? My point is ANYONE can get a amphetamine prescription in the "real world'" I am guessing that getting a prescription isn't enough for an exemption, that there is a higher bar the player has to show that they actually require the prescription, and that bar is set pretty high. My psychiatrist just shrugged when I said I had ADHD and needed a prescription, asked me a set of basic questions, then wrote it out. I somehow don't think the MLB would be too impressed by that.

And I didn't know about the 40 man exemption on random marijuana tests. Boy, being a minor leaguer is even worse than I thought.
   46. RJ in TO Posted: November 05, 2012 at 07:24 PM (#4293778)
I humbly accept the correction. But how often does the MLB give out exemptions? My point is ANYONE can get a amphetamine prescription in the "real world'" I am guessing that getting a prescription isn't enough for an exemption, that there is a higher bar the player has to show that they actually require the prescription, and that bar is set pretty high. My psychiatrist just shrugged when I said I had ADHD and needed a prescription, asked me a set of basic questions, then wrote it out. I somehow don't think the MLB would be too impressed by that.


From USA Today, in July:
MLB and the union also altered the procedure for players to receive exemptions for drugs related to attention deficit disorder and ADHD. There were 111 therapeutic-use exemptions granted in 2011, and 110 in 2010. A three-person panel now may rule on an exemption if the doctor requesting it is not certified by MLB, or if there is a dispute.

I'm assuming that's the number of exemptions for all players on the 40 man roster, and not just for players appearing in MLB. If so, it means somewhere around 8% of players have (or had) a therapeutic use exemption specifically related to ADD or ADHD. I don't know if that's above or below the expected rate in non-baseball populations, but it doesn't make it seem like it's abnormally hard for a player to get a waiver to use these drugs.
   47. tshipman Posted: November 05, 2012 at 08:14 PM (#4293808)
But how often does the MLB give out exemptions?


A lot. All you have to do is get diagnosed with ADD. Shockingly, ADD diagnoses are way up since the ban.

Edit: coke to the Toronto Jones.
   48. alilisd Posted: November 06, 2012 at 12:22 PM (#4294399)
But I would actually bet the other way, specifically that the lack of baseball wear/tear in his 20s is really going to help him stay healthy and effective well into his 30s.


and

Plausible and reasonable, Harvey. But all of us are guessing about this.


To the first point, he hasn't been able to stay healthy yet; why would you think this would change with age? To the second, his own team has discussed how difficult it is to maintain him and how beat up his body is from the drug abuse, so, no, it's not a guess (unless you think they are lying).
   49. Nasty Nate Posted: November 06, 2012 at 12:31 PM (#4294415)
To the second, his own team has discussed how difficult it is to maintain him and how beat up his body is from the drug abuse


I don't remember this, are there interviews/news stories in which the Rangers mention this?

I think he is injury-prone in addition to the drug issues, not necessarily because of them.
   50. BDC Posted: November 06, 2012 at 12:43 PM (#4294444)
I think he is injury-prone in addition to the drug issues, not necessarily because of them

The two major injuries Hamilton's sustained in Texas were the result of running into a wall in '09 (I was at that game, a grisly sight), and running into a tag at the plate in '11. I don't really see how drug history would have exacerbated either injury; it was just a matter of hitting something that didn't move. If there's a connection, it's that Hamilton has often played as if he was on borrowed time. He came back from a more "minor" injury (cracked rib IIRC) late in '10 and immediately dived to the turf for a line drive on his first play (I was there too). If anything he's getting better about taking risks like that. But it's not a matter of him being in bad shape; it's been a matter of recklessness. Perhaps Ray is right and Josh will start to play a lot smarter/sounder in his mid-30s.
   51. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: November 06, 2012 at 01:15 PM (#4294492)
Players on the 40 man are not subjected to random marijuana tests, only test for "just cause."


Wouldn't Hamilton, because of his documented drug use, be a 'just cause' candidate for as long as he plays?


The two major injuries Hamilton's sustained in Texas were the result of running into a wall in '09 (I was at that game, a grisly sight), and running into a tag at the plate in '11. I don't really see how drug history would have exacerbated either injury; it was just a matter of hitting something that didn't move. If there's a connection, it's that Hamilton has often played as if he was on borrowed time.


I think I am firmly in the 'players CAN be injury prone camp' and Hamilton fits the bill. Sure, it's easy to explain away each individual injury, but as a whole, Hamilton misses more time than the average star player. Why should I think that will change? Random #### just happens more frequently to some people. Plus if Hamilton resigns with Texas I guarantee that Adrian Adamantium Skeleton Beltre will collide with Hamilton and break him within a matter of days after the signing.
   52. alilisd Posted: November 06, 2012 at 03:48 PM (#4294781)
I don't remember this, are there interviews/news stories in which the Rangers mention this?


Yes, wish I could find it, but it was an article I read some time ago and really don't even know for sure where I read it. It wasn't an indictment or hatchet job, they were just discussing the amount of time they needed to spend on keeping him healthy. Basically, he was a bit more susceptible to missing a game here or there due to the drug abuse; his body was more susceptible to breaking down or inhibiting him from staying on the field than someone who hadn't abused drugs the way he did.

I think he is injury-prone in addition to the drug issues, not necessarily because of them.


Could be.
   53. Nasty Nate Posted: November 06, 2012 at 03:58 PM (#4294808)
Basically, he was a bit more susceptible to missing a game here or there due to the drug abuse; his body was more susceptible to breaking down or inhibiting him from staying on the field than someone who hadn't abused drugs the way he did.


This does sound plausible. Post #50 explains some of the bigger injuries, but he has also had lots of smaller injuries (strains, tightness, soreness etc) that made him miss short stretches of games and/or play at a diminished capacity. As you say, part of that could be caused by him mistreating his body for years.
   54. Blubaldo Jimenez (OMJ) Posted: November 07, 2012 at 09:38 AM (#4296680)
Wouldn't Hamilton, because of his documented drug use, be a 'just cause' candidate for as long as he plays?


Yea, and now that you mention it, I think he gets tested a lot, maybe twice a week (?) if I take a wild ass guess at remembering.

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