Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Thursday, March 20, 2014

MLB system discourages teams like Astros from promoting top young talent | FOX Sports on MSN

Outfielder George Springer, the Astros’ top prospect, has yet to play an inning in the major leagues. He almost certainly will not make the team’s Opening Day roster.

Yet last September, the Astros offered him a seven-year, $23 million contract, according to major league sources.

Springer, 24, rejected the offer, sources said, declining to give up three years of arbitration and one year of free agency.

Jim Furtado Posted: March 20, 2014 at 07:27 AM | 27 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: astros, george springer

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. Astroenteritis Posted: March 20, 2014 at 09:40 AM (#4674382)
No way Springer ever accepts a 7/23 offer. He would be 31 when it expires, though at some point renegotiation would have been likely if he turns into a star. He has a high ceiling, but I'm probably one of the few Astro fans who thinks he will benefit by more time in the minors. In the current system there is almost no incentive for a team like Houston start the clock on a player like Springer. The increase from 59 to 62 wins, or whatever, just isn't significant.
   2. Mike Emeigh Posted: March 20, 2014 at 10:59 AM (#4674415)
I'm probably one of the few Astro fans who thinks he will benefit by more time in the minors.


They (Astros fans) need to pay closer attention. A guy who has an 18/11 HR/2B+3B ratio and strikes out once every 3.25 AB (which is what Springer did at Oklahoma City last season) usually does have work to do.

I'm not selling the HRs short, mind you - but when you have that many more HR than other EBH, that often suggests that you are hitting a good number of fly balls that carry out of minor league parks but that won't carry out of major league parks. And the walk rate spike at AAA in combination with the other numbers suggests that Springer might be erring on the side of being too selective a la Jeremy Hermida - which is something else that he won't be able to do in the majors.

-- MWE
   3. Honkie Kong Posted: March 20, 2014 at 11:12 AM (#4674417)
Not to add anything substantative, other than minor league walk rates and HRs transfer badly, but really want to plug MWE's Hermida/Francoeur call.

Is a thing of the past, but Hermida and Francoeur were considered outstanding OF prospects in the mid oughts. And every prospect publication was calling for Hermida to be a superstar. MWE disagreed vehemently, based on the games he had seen. He was adamant, that the swing was too weird, and that the walk rates were a function of minor league pitchers' lack of control more than Hermida's skill.

It is not a big thing probably, but I was always impressed by how he called Hermida almost perfectly. Want to use this comment to show my appreciation.
   4. Jim Furtado Posted: March 20, 2014 at 11:51 AM (#4674437)
I have watched a lot of Springer the last two springs. He has a lot of talent. He's far from a polished player. There is considerable potential that we will regret not grabbing the $23 million while it was there for the taking.
   5. Lars6788 Posted: March 20, 2014 at 12:01 PM (#4674445)
Is Cespedes an appropriate comp? No doubt a talented player but not quite a star.
   6. jmurph Posted: March 20, 2014 at 12:15 PM (#4674459)
There is considerable potential that we will regret not grabbing the $23 million while it was there for the taking.


Was thinking the same thing. He's already 24, not old by any means, but a full 2 years older than Longoria was when he signed his deal.
   7. Buck Coats Posted: March 20, 2014 at 02:40 PM (#4674546)
No way Springer ever accepts a 7/23 offer. He would be 31 when it expires


Well whether he takes the deal or not he'll be 31 when he's a FA, right? It's either 7 seasons starting now, or 6.5 seasons starting in July.
   8. valuearbitrageur Posted: March 20, 2014 at 03:18 PM (#4674577)
No way Springer ever accepts a 7/23 offer. He would be 31 when it expires


Since Baseball Chick is not yet here, let me fill in for her.

"No way Jim Crane ever approves spending $23 million on one player!"

Seriously tho, if that covers 4 years of arb it's not a bad deal for Springer. He should get 1.5m first 3 seasons either way, then almost $5.5M per arb year. Obviously he will do better if he's a decent MLB player, but the risk reduction utility is huge. Plus it makes promoting him much easier, so a few months less riding minor league buses and minor league groupies.

If I'm getting this wrong and he only has 3 years arb, then I see his dilemma. But still, major league groupies, Springer. Factor them in!
   9. Astroenteritis Posted: March 20, 2014 at 03:51 PM (#4674601)
But still, major league groupies, Springer. Factor them in!


Oops, I forgot to factor that into the equation, but I'm not up to speed on the latest studies on major league vs. replacement level groupies.
   10. just plain joe Posted: March 20, 2014 at 04:32 PM (#4674624)
Oops, I forgot to factor that into the equation, but I'm not up to speed on the latest studies on major league vs. replacement level groupies.


I assume that it is still a pretty big gap. Dick Hoak, when he was a AAA manager some 40 years ago, tried to get his team fired up by telling them they were this close, thumb and forefinger 1/8th inch apart, to big league #####.
   11. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: March 20, 2014 at 04:36 PM (#4674627)
I'm not up to speed on the latest studies on major league vs. replacement level groupies.


Go see REO Speedwagon at the state fair.
   12. Walt Davis Posted: March 20, 2014 at 05:27 PM (#4674646)
Now that I see his age, yeah, this might be a deal to take. On the other hand, even in 3 years of arb, an average player will probably get $23 M or so.

Well whether he takes the deal or not he'll be 31 when he's a FA, right? It's either 7 seasons starting now, or 6.5 seasons starting in July.

This is an excellent point I had not considered. He's not signing away 3 arb years and an FA year, he's at most signing away 4 super-2 years and likely just 3 arb years (and about 1.75 in min salary). Kid needs a new agent.
   13. Dan Posted: March 22, 2014 at 03:20 PM (#4675397)
Seriously, turning down that deal is foolish when it also means pushing back your ML debut and losing the chance to stop the team from ####### with your service time. Take the deal and be glad that it means they're going to put you in the majors on Opening Day. I could see turning it down if it had team options for his FA years, but as addressed a few posts above, he's not going to be a FA in that 7th year either way because without taking the deal he's in the minors at least until May (if the Astros don't mind him being a Super 2 and just want the 7th partial season of control) or late June/early July (if the Astros want to lower chances he's a Super 2).
   14. spycake Posted: March 22, 2014 at 03:27 PM (#4675404)
Seriously, turning down that deal is foolish when it also means pushing back your ML debut and losing the chance to stop the team from ####### with your service time.


Even if he signed the deal, the Astros still could have optioned him to AAA, right? He'd just make a lot more money doing it.

Admittedly, it would look a little strange to sign a contract extension then go back to the minors, but it would be no different than how guys in the draft used to sign "major league contracts".

Also, do we know whether this included team options beyond 7 years?
   15. BDC Posted: March 22, 2014 at 03:33 PM (#4675408)
I think that sometimes (as with guys who don't sign when drafted) a top prospect can lose sight of how much he's turning down. The "baseball community" convinces young guys and their families that they are on track for guaranteed mega-riches, and so they turn down guaranteed riches. $23M may buy you only a year or so of a veteran FA star, but it's a lot more than many very good prospects earn in salary in their entire pro careers.
   16. Lance Reddick! Lance him! Posted: March 22, 2014 at 04:03 PM (#4675418)
Tie free agency to years of pro service and this entire problem goes away.

If a 2011 college draftee were eligible for free agency after, say, the 2019 season, regardless of whether he had six-plus years of major-league service or five or two, the incentive to manipulate the clock would no longer exist, and teams would unreservedly graduate their best prospects the moment they proved ready, instead of extorting them to sign favorable contracts.
   17. Jim Wisinski Posted: March 22, 2014 at 05:51 PM (#4675455)
Tie free agency to years of pro service and this entire problem goes away.

If a 2011 college draftee were eligible for free agency after, say, the 2019 season, regardless of whether he had six-plus years of major-league service or five or two, the incentive to manipulate the clock would no longer exist, and teams would unreservedly graduate their best prospects the moment they proved ready, instead of extorting them to sign favorable contracts.


What massive thing will the players give up in negotiations in exchange for most draftees becoming free agents earlier in their major league careers?
   18. Dan Posted: March 22, 2014 at 06:47 PM (#4675475)
I think they need to do something, but making free agency come a certain period after a player is drafted or signed as an amateur seems like it's too extreme and seems like it would have a lot of unintended effects. All players don't take the same amount of time to develop and teams shouldn't have to be punished if they draft a guy who takes longer to work his way through the minors. This rule would also create a lot of bizarre incentives to rush players or draft guys who have a quicker path to the majors rather than the most talented players available.

Maybe a better solution would be that players start accruing time towards their ML free agency in AAA if they're there for longer than a full season? I don't think you can give them true MLB service time, but you could just count it as such for the purposes of determining FA eligibility. Teams could still play games slowing down promotions, but I think they would be more hesitant to do so if it risked retarding their prospects' progression during key developmental years in the minors.
   19. cardsfanboy Posted: March 22, 2014 at 07:28 PM (#4675485)
Tie free agency to years of pro service and this entire problem goes away


How is it not already tied to pro service? As I understand it, after you are drafted, you have 3 years where the team has complete control over you, then in the fourth they have to put you on the 40 man roster or you can become a minor league free agent. If put on the 40 man roster (which is an automatic pay raise, even if it's not minor league minimum) the team still maintains your rights for another three years, etc...

So free agency is tied to your years of pro service, but a team can effectively control that for up to 11 years.

I do think they might need to change the rules based upon the age of the player when drafted/signed. Or set up a rule that no matter what, if the player is on a year to year contract in their age 29/30 season, they are eligible for free agency. There should be no reason for holding a 24 year old back in the minors in the hopes of getting a half year of extra low cost play out of him.
   20. greenback calls it soccer Posted: March 22, 2014 at 07:35 PM (#4675487)
then in the fourth they have to put you on the 40 man roster or you can become a minor league free agent.

No, in this case you are subject to the Rule 5 draft.
   21. cardsfanboy Posted: March 22, 2014 at 09:51 PM (#4675528)
No, in this case you are subject to the Rule 5 draft.


Yes I know that, but in that rule 5 draft, you still have to be put on the major league roster. I didn't want to go over every single permutation of the possiblities, and then remain on the 40 man roster.
   22. JJ1986 Posted: March 22, 2014 at 10:00 PM (#4675530)
Minor League Free Agency is after 6 and a half years.
   23. greenback calls it soccer Posted: March 22, 2014 at 10:00 PM (#4675532)
No, the point is that if you are not taken in the Rule 5 draft, then you are not a free agent. Minor leaguers toil for six years iIRC before they can become free agents.

ETA: RC to JJ.
   24. cardsfanboy Posted: March 22, 2014 at 10:19 PM (#4675537)
No, the point is that if you are not taken in the Rule 5 draft, then you are not a free agent. Minor leaguers toil for six years iIRC before they can become free agents.


Yep...the about.com article that I was referencing has an error in it.
A player not on the 40-man roster and not taken in the Rule 5 draft remains under contract with his current organization. He can elect to become a minor-league free agent instead of being taken in the Rule 5 draft, but players want to be selected in the draft because it represents what could be a fast track to the majors, getting away from a team that does not believe he belongs on the 40-man roster.


but looking at the MiLB page, it doesn't appear that is the case.
   25. Sleepy supports unauthorized rambling Posted: March 22, 2014 at 10:33 PM (#4675542)
Looks like he's considering filing a grievance. Hope he does, and wins, but I doubt that he will.
   26. base ball chick Posted: March 22, 2014 at 11:09 PM (#4675546)
agree with putting a total of ML + minor service time before free agency

looks like the shtthead astros are doing to springer what they did when gerry hunsicker was GM - keeping prospects in the minros as long as possible to start their service clock so that their 6-7 years runs from like age 25/6 on so that they are wahsed up afterwards

springer was essentially blackmailed - sign this extremely team friendly contract or else die in the minors and we'll just sign some other guy teach you a lesson and the prospects coming after you will drop on knees.

i'm tired of hearing about how the ballplayers make more in a year than i do in my lifetime. the ****ing OWNERS make more in a year than every single one of us primates added together do in a lifetime. the ballplayers deserve their fair share.

i am really disgusted at hjow many people like and miss the great old days of slavery and think that the current model of indentured servitude lets "ungrateful" players go to where they will be paid better

bah

i'd like to see how YOU guys would like that if THAT happened to you in YOUR life

groupies? sure when you are young stupid and drunk. you get older and it is just ****ing more and not enjoying the lonliness after
   27. Squash Posted: March 23, 2014 at 12:45 AM (#4675579)
Tie free agency to years of pro service and this entire problem goes away

Why not just get rid of the Super 2 deadline? If you bring a guy up before rosters expand then his free agency clock starts. Some prospects would still get pushed back until next year to start their clock later, but teams also have to face the fact that they can't get their stud up for a loooong time (until September) and then only have him for 25 or so games if they want to monkey with his service time. So if you plan on using him at all that season he comes up in April like he should. Then there wouldn't be this nonsense of holding the guy out for a month or two, taking advantage of him for the bulk of the season, but somehow having it not count.

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
BFFB
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogOT: Politics, October 2014: Sunshine, Baseball, and Etch A Sketch: How Politicians Use Analogies
(2890 - 6:07pm, Oct 21)
Last: The Yankee Clapper

Newsblog2014 WORLD SERIES GAME 1 OMNICHATTER
(57 - 6:02pm, Oct 21)
Last: geonose

NewsblogBaseball Prospectus | Pebble Hunting: An Illustrated Guide to the People of Kauffman Stadium
(10 - 6:00pm, Oct 21)
Last: Perry

NewsblogRoyals’ James Shields passed kidney stone during ALCS but is ready for World Series | The Kansas City Star
(35 - 5:55pm, Oct 21)
Last: donlock

NewsblogBaseball's hardest throwing bullpen - Beyond the Box Score
(7 - 5:51pm, Oct 21)
Last: Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play

NewsblogCardinals proud of fourth straight NLCS appearance | cardinals.com
(58 - 5:44pm, Oct 21)
Last: Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play

NewsblogFan Returns Home Run Ball to Ishikawa; Receives World Series tickets
(54 - 5:44pm, Oct 21)
Last: The Yankee Clapper

NewsblogSielski: A friend fights for ex-Phillie Dick Allen's Hall of Fame induction
(101 - 5:35pm, Oct 21)
Last: Morty Causa

NewsblogOT: The Soccer Thread, September 2014
(850 - 5:26pm, Oct 21)
Last: ursus arctos

NewsblogOT: Monthly NBA Thread - October 2014
(298 - 5:09pm, Oct 21)
Last: steagles

NewsblogBrisbee: The 5 worst commercials of the MLB postseason
(173 - 4:45pm, Oct 21)
Last: Squash

NewsblogOT:  October 2014 - College Football thread
(446 - 3:37pm, Oct 21)
Last: AuntBea

NewsblogSo You’re About to Pitch to Pablo Sandoval | FanGraphs Baseball
(4 - 2:45pm, Oct 21)
Last: deputydrew

NewsblogMorosi: Could Cain’s story make baseball king of sports world again?
(106 - 2:35pm, Oct 21)
Last: Jarrod HypnerotomachiaPoliphili(Teddy F. Ballgame)

NewsblogCalcaterra: So, if you’re not a fan of the Royals or Giants, who ya got?
(100 - 1:35pm, Oct 21)
Last: Belfry Bob

Page rendered in 0.4058 seconds
52 querie(s) executed