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Sunday, February 18, 2018

Padres, Eric Hosmer agree to terms

The Padres got their man.

The team and free agent first baseman Eric Hosmer have agreed to a deal, two sources said Saturday night.

The average annual value of the eight-year deal is $18 million, the largest monetary commitment in Padres history.

The Padres had said they would be creative. The $144-million contract is believed to be front-loaded, which might make the opt-out more attractive for Hosmer.

Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: February 18, 2018 at 04:29 AM | 47 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: collude this, eric hosmer, padres

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   1. jingoist Posted: February 18, 2018 at 05:11 AM (#5626545)
I'll bet Padre fans will not be happy they are still paying this guy all that cash along about year 5 or 6.
   2. McCoy Posted: February 18, 2018 at 07:59 AM (#5626556)
Id say by about year 3 or 4
   3. bfan Posted: February 18, 2018 at 08:04 AM (#5626558)
are we done with collusion and suppressed salaries? Can we get to a point where the FA interest was a function of who the FA's were? When next year's FA class gets new records, reflecting their value, will we need to talk about hard salary caps because salaries have gone up so much?
   4. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: February 18, 2018 at 10:01 AM (#5626564)
So, the deal is structured (per MLBTR) as $20M, 20, 20, 20, 20, 13, 13, 13, with a $5M signing bonus. Full no trade for 3 years, then limited no trade. Opt out after year 5.

I don't like Hosmer, but this isn't a terrible deal for SD. The AAV is low enough that the 8 years isn't egregious.
   5. The Ghost of Logan Schafer Posted: February 18, 2018 at 10:05 AM (#5626565)
There's about 10 big names left, then a group of solid/so-so types.
Logan Morrison, Moustakas, JD Martinez, Arrieta, Cobb, Lynn, Holland, Lucroy, the 2 Cargos.
   6. Nasty Nate Posted: February 18, 2018 at 10:17 AM (#5626568)
For all of the talk of this year's offseason, the size of this is in the range predicted by most people back in the fall.
Full no trade for 3 years, then limited no trade.
And then we would gain back no-trade via the 10/5 route, if he doesn't opt out.
   7. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: February 18, 2018 at 10:44 AM (#5626571)
And then we would gain back no-trade via the 10/5 route, if he doesn't opt out.


And the only way he doesn't opt out is if his career is effectively over by then. The Padres won't be able to dump his salary those last three years, but $13M a year for three years won't be crippling even to the Padres.
   8. Nasty Nate Posted: February 18, 2018 at 10:49 AM (#5626572)
And the only way he doesn't opt out is if his career is effectively over by then.
That's an exaggeration. There are plenty of mid-30's guys who have lots of baseball left who get 2/$25m, 1/$10 type deals. If he's in that range, he will neither opt out nor be released by the Padres.
   9. Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman Posted: February 18, 2018 at 11:21 AM (#5626577)
There's about 10 big names left, then a group of solid/so-so types.
Logan Morrison, Moustakas, JD Martinez, Arrieta, Cobb, Lynn, Holland, Lucroy, the 2 Cargos.
So who are the big names?
   10. Brian Posted: February 18, 2018 at 11:23 AM (#5626578)
I'll bet Padre fans will not be happy they are still paying this guy all that cash along about year 5 or 6.


Id say by about year 3 or 4


I'll take July.
   11. Nasty Nate Posted: February 18, 2018 at 11:30 AM (#5626579)
There's about 10 big names left, then a group of solid/so-so types.
Logan Morrison, Moustakas, JD Martinez, Arrieta, Cobb, Lynn, Holland, Lucroy, the 2 Cargos.
So who are the big names?
Well, "Moustakas" has 9 letters. That's pretty big.
   12. I Am Not a Number Posted: February 18, 2018 at 11:32 AM (#5626580)
but $13M a year for three years won't be crippling even to the Padres.

No, they should still be able to win their 70 games a year even carrying that burden.
   13. shoewizard Posted: February 18, 2018 at 11:48 AM (#5626583)
The whole idea of Hosmer should be he is young and DEPENDABLE. But that is completely undercut by THIS GRAPH
   14. JRVJ Posted: February 18, 2018 at 12:05 PM (#5626586)
This is a strange deal. Some comments:

1. Prior to signing Hosmer, the Pads had a $70.6MM payroll for 2018 and $72.9MM for 2019 (as per BRef's calculation).

So it's not calculated at $90MM plus however the signing bonus is calculated (or $88MM if you go by AAV).

So they're fine for the next two years, while waiting for a lot of their young talent to come up. After 2019, they will only have 3 players under contract (Myers, Hand and Hosmer), so it's pretty difficult to plan out where they'll be.

2. Hosmer will make very little impact on the Padres' playoff chances in 2018 & 2019. He may be a great mentor for the young prospects being churned by the Padres' farm system, but if he's to help them win games, it'll be in 2020 or beyond.

3. If you go by $18MM AAV, Hosmer is getting paid $9MM per Win.

I really don't see any signs of collusion in that number (in fact, it's questionable whether Hosmer will achieve 2 Wins per year on the average).

4. As a corollary to the above statement, if Hosmer had this deal (or materially this deal) on the table for at least a month.... what exactly did Boras and Hosmer think he was worth? Did they think Hosmer was going to be paid $12MM per WIN? $13MM per WIN? Or that he was going to turn into a 3, 4, even 5 WIN per year player?

Seeing as how Boras is the agent for 5 of the better FAs (and I believe Hosmer is the first one to get signed), Boras' role in this off-season should be looked into in great detail (i.e., it stands to reason, as evidenced by Hosmer's deal, that Boras read the market wrong).
   15. Brian Posted: February 18, 2018 at 12:30 PM (#5626589)
Did SD take one for the team? This will kill most of the collusion talk and the commissioner still has the Bud Selig discretionary funds at hand. Hmmm ...
   16. Russlan thinks deGrom is da bomb Posted: February 18, 2018 at 12:58 PM (#5626592)
I think this is a fine deal for the Padres. Hosmer is entering his age 28 season and just had a 4 WAR season, both by fangraphs and BR. That may be undervaluing his season a bit as his defense is rated poorly by those two systems (worse than Lucas Duda) despite the fact that he has an excelent defensive reputation. If he us actually a good defensive player, last year might have been a 5-WAR year for him.

The Padres aren't going to be able to win bidding wars for the super-elite free agents so I think this is a good deal. He is in his prime and his best year might still be forthcoming.
   17. Zach Posted: February 18, 2018 at 01:03 PM (#5626595)
I liked him in Kansas City, so I'll wish him the best.

That said, I think KC dodged a bullet. They're going to be very bad in the first years of this contract, and the best case scenario has them getting good right as he gets an opt out. If you can't use the first three years, then why would you guarantee eight in order to get five? I know Moore is in love with Hosmer's game, but I'm glad he didn't match this deal.

By reports, the Royals offered $147 million, but backloaded it and didn't offer an opt-out. If you spend that long a period offering the most years and the most money, only to have it come down to the question of an opt-out, I think you have to accept that the player doesn't really want to sign with you.
   18. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: February 18, 2018 at 01:04 PM (#5626596)
Seems like a lousy deal to me, but the Padres have been after him right from the get-go, and if they want to light a bunch of their money on fire, I guess that's their right.
   19. Zach Posted: February 18, 2018 at 01:17 PM (#5626602)
I'll say this for the Padres. Hosmer is a very fun player to root for.
   20. BDC Posted: February 18, 2018 at 01:18 PM (#5626603)
After 2019, they will only have 3 players under contract (Myers, Hand and Hosmer)

Speaking of Wil Myers, does he go back to the outfield now?
   21. Man o' Schwar Posted: February 18, 2018 at 01:43 PM (#5626609)
I'll say this for the Padres. Hosmer is a very fun player to root for.

And he has maybe the funniest looking baseball card in the 2018 series 1 base set for Topps.
   22. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: February 18, 2018 at 01:52 PM (#5626611)
Speaking of Wil Myers, does he go back to the outfield now?


Yep, which is another problem with the move. Myers isn't a great defender anywhere, but I think he's worse in the OF at this point than he is at first.
   23. dejarouehg Posted: February 18, 2018 at 02:07 PM (#5626612)
And he has maybe the funniest looking baseball card in the 2018 series 1 base set for Topps.


How does the set look? Layout doesn't seem that different than last year's
   24. Walt Davis Posted: February 18, 2018 at 03:56 PM (#5626631)
Yeah, because of Myers, I've never understood the Padres' fixation on Hosmer.

#14 ... no, Boras and Hosmer think Hosmer is better than a 2-WAR player. Probably so do the Padres. It seems so do most baseball "insiders" ... though obviously the question of how long he stays there. His offense has been up and down and nobody should have confidence in their projections. His fancy defense numbers suggest below average, the gold gloves suggest above-average and, based on press reports, it seems most of those insiders believe in the GGs.

Over the last 3 years, he's put up 10 oWAR ... of course over the last 4 it's only 10.4 oWAR. That's a .7 WAR difference in annual average between one true Hosmer and another. A simple 3-year Marcel projects him to 3.6 oWAR; a simple 4-year Marcel projects him to 3.1 oWAR, a .5 difference. All of those projections are heavily influenced by 2017 and the lower ones are heavily counter-influenced by 2014. Then you've got the question of whether he's a -5 or a +5 on defense. So his worst projections are based on an estimation that he has been a 2.1-2.6 WAR player; the best projections are based on an estimation (or belief) that he's been a 3.8 to 4.1 WAR player. That's a difference of at least $8 M per year in AAV and probably 2 years in contract length. The padres landed somewhere in the middle.

As to $/WAR -- fangrabphs seems to think it's already at $9 per (or "should" be). Over the course of an 8-year contract, we expect inflation. Given the contract length, break-even on this contract is probably about 15-16 WAR, maybe a little lower. If he's currently a 3.5 WAR player, he should project out to about 20 WAR (the toppish end of his comp range). If he's currently a 2.5 WAR player, he'll probably limp across with 12-15 WAR. The Padres got him for probably about a 3 WAR price.
   25. A Baseball Fan Posted: February 18, 2018 at 04:24 PM (#5626640)
David Cameron immediately making his presence known in San Diego.
   26. salvomania Posted: February 18, 2018 at 04:24 PM (#5626641)
How does the set look? Layout doesn't seem that different than last year's

The thing i remember from last year's set was the awful "perspective" type in the player name, as if you were viewing the name on an angled card so that the last letters were much smaller than the first letters, and the type for a player with a long name looked ridiculous.
   27. Baseballs Most Beloved Figure Posted: February 18, 2018 at 04:30 PM (#5626643)
Ok we can stop talking about how evil the owners are for colluding and not trying to win and now talk about how stupid they are for signing guys like Hosmer to contracts like this?
   28. Fernigal McGunnigle Posted: February 18, 2018 at 04:32 PM (#5626644)
The whole idea of Hosmer should be he is young and DEPENDABLE. But that is completely undercut by THIS GRAPH
The funny thing about Hosmer is that both the Odd Year Hosmer, who is a good ballplayer, and Even Year Hosmer, who is below average, have been extremely dependable, improving slowly but steadily every year they've been in MLB. Well, per BBRef; Fangraphs thinks Even Year Hosmer essentially held serve at replacement level between 2014 and 2016. Anyway, per BBRef and using an idiot-level trend function on a spreadsheet, we might expect upcoming career years from Even and Odd Hosmer at maybe 1.2 WAR and 4.3 WAR respectively.
   29. Stevey Posted: February 18, 2018 at 04:58 PM (#5626652)
Ok we can stop talking about how evil the owners are for colluding and not trying to win


Maybe we can do that in the thread where we talk about the Rays DFA-ing one of their starting position players, and trading one of their starting pitchers in a salary dump?
   30. Man o' Schwar Posted: February 18, 2018 at 06:05 PM (#5626677)
How does the set look? Layout doesn't seem that different than last year's

It's not bad for a base set but nothing special. With no Ohtani at all and no Judge autos in Series 1, I don't think it's going to be nearly as popular as last season's Series 1 was. They're hanging their hats on a boatload of short print and super short print cards.
   31. Ray (CTL) Posted: February 18, 2018 at 08:33 PM (#5626718)
I don't know why you'd pay $144m for the latter day Wally Joyner.
   32. DaVoice of DaPeople Posted: February 18, 2018 at 08:51 PM (#5626721)
I’m sad to see him go. He was probably my favorite player on the team.

2018 is gonna be one very long and very boring season in KC. Cheslor Cuthbert and Hunter Dozier are the top candidates to replace Hoz at first....
   33. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: February 18, 2018 at 09:59 PM (#5626735)
I don't know why you'd pay $144m for the latter day Wally Joyner.

Because $18M p.a. isn't very much in terms of MLB salary anymore. If Hosmer can repeat Joyner's age 28-35 seasons (20 WAR) he will have earned his money.

Basically, Hosmer only needs to be a hair above average (2.5 WAR) to make the deal break-even for SD. The length of the deal is unprecedented for a player of Hosmer's quality, but the total cost is fairly modest.
   34. Ray (CTL) Posted: February 18, 2018 at 10:30 PM (#5626738)
The problem though Snapper is that there's such a limited upside. Hosmer has a broad base of fair to middling skills for a 1B. He doesn't do anything really well, from AVE to OBP to SLG to 2B to HR to BB to defense. I understand that players with a broad base of skills can be underrated but for him each skill isn't quite good enough to leave him underrated. So for him to have a couple of seasons where he approaches MVP quality he'll have to fluke into a .350 average or something. More likely he'll slip. Less likely he'll significantly improve a central skill, like hitting home runs or something.

I just don't like signing players to big contracts that you're most likely to see 3 WAR from.
   35. JRVJ Posted: February 18, 2018 at 10:51 PM (#5626743)
24, by Fangraphs, Hosmer accumulated 8.5 WAR in the last 4 years. And via BRef, he accumulated 9.4 WAR in the last 4 years.

I can buy into Hosmer being a 3 or 4 WAR player in 2018. But over an 8 span? San Diego will be lucky if he is above (or even at) the 2 WAR line by the second half of the contract.

So again, I don't get what Boras or Hosmer thought he was worth long term, because Boras at least knows well that when signing a long term contract, the short term upside gets cancelled out by the long term downside.
   36. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: February 19, 2018 at 05:20 AM (#5626764)
Because $18M p.a. isn't very much in terms of MLB salary anymore.

There is no universe, where this deal can accurately be described as "$18M p.a."

If it goes well, and he opts out, it's 5 years at 21m p.a.

If he opts in to 3/39 at the end? Well then it's probably safe to say the contract has been a disaster. And what's more, he would have to project to less than 4 WAR over those 3 seasons to want to opt out (going rate should probably close to 10m per win at that point). So best case, just about a fringe starter if he is right on the cusp and you squint. But most likely a bench player (or just flat out below replacement)... which for a 1B with no defensive versatility, is pretty close to worthless. To the point where you are probably just about better off cutting him outright.

So in that case, calling the contract 5 years at 29m p.a. would probably be more honest.
   37. Nasty Nate Posted: February 19, 2018 at 07:04 AM (#5626766)

If he opts in to 3/39 at the end? Well then it's probably safe to say the contract has been a disaster.
It's not safe to say that.
   38. BDC Posted: February 19, 2018 at 08:01 AM (#5626770)
Bizarre as it sounds, though, I don’t think teams estimate WAR/$$ the way we do here. I think it’s more a matter of, we’ve got this money, do we want to be seen as serious about building a contender, what’ll that cost if we pay full retail - like people buying a big car or boat. It used to be the big-market clubs would indulge that display, but the luxury tax cooled that off, and a few of them (White Sox, Tigers) are tearing-down or “tanking,” so now it’s the Milwaukees and San Diegos who spend like the nouveau riche.
   39. bunyon Posted: February 19, 2018 at 08:25 AM (#5626776)

I'll take July.


April 1, Bob.
   40. PreservedFish Posted: February 19, 2018 at 08:56 AM (#5626784)
Bizarre as it sounds, though, I don’t think teams estimate WAR/$$ the way we do here.


Agreed.

My experience in as a fictional GM in a DMB dynasty league indicates to me that WAR/$$ is an abstraction of limited value. You have a hole, you have a budget, you have internal options, you have other external options with their various price tags - once you pull all this stuff together, WAR/$$ doesn't mean much at all. It has value as a kind of vague benchmark but you wouldn't manage your decisions by it.

But then again, the GMs have increasingly come to resemble Fangraphs readers and perhaps the brutally low contracts for guys like Frazier and Nunez suggest that they do care. I bet WAR/$$ comes up in negotiations all the time these days.

If he opts in to 3/39 at the end? Well then it's probably safe to say the contract has been a disaster.


Lots of things can happen. It's possible that he's a Jay Bruce or Todd Frazier type at that time, still useful but without much of a market, and the 3/$39 is his best option. It's possible he's MVP level for 3 years then falls apart. Who knows.
   41. Nasty Nate Posted: February 19, 2018 at 10:12 AM (#5626812)

Lots of things can happen. It's possible that he's a Jay Bruce or Todd Frazier type at that time, still useful but without much of a market, and the 3/$39 is his best option. It's possible he's MVP level for 3 years then falls apart. Who knows.
Right, or he can be better than expected during those last 3 years.
   42. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: February 19, 2018 at 12:57 PM (#5626907)
The problem though Snapper is that there's such a limited upside. Hosmer has a broad base of fair to middling skills for a 1B. He doesn't do anything really well, from AVE to OBP to SLG to 2B to HR to BB to defense. I understand that players with a broad base of skills can be underrated but for him each skill isn't quite good enough to leave him underrated. So for him to have a couple of seasons where he approaches MVP quality he'll have to fluke into a .350 average or something. More likely he'll slip. Less likely he'll significantly improve a central skill, like hitting home runs or something.

I just don't like signing players to big contracts that you're most likely to see 3 WAR from.


I agree with you in principle. I wouldn't give an average player such a long deal. But, despite the length, there's a decent chance this works out OK or even well for SD.
   43. Ray (CTL) Posted: February 19, 2018 at 01:34 PM (#5626933)
It sort of limits you too. There's obviously nothing wrong with 2-3 WAR players and you need them, but they don't really push your team towards a championship. They're second tier players at best but it's the 4-7 WAR players that really carry you. I don't mind paying for free agents that are top tier but second tier players you really should be able to pluck from your farm system.
   44. SoSH U at work Posted: February 19, 2018 at 01:45 PM (#5626944)
But second tier players you really should be able to pluck from your farm system.


Plucking Hosmers from the Farm seems a little more difficult than that.

And, it goes without saying, Plucking Hosmers is shitty name for a band.
   45. Nasty Nate Posted: February 19, 2018 at 01:51 PM (#5626949)
Most (if not all) of the recent champion teams have had all three: 2-3 WAR guys from free agency, 2-3 WAR guys from the farm system, and 4-7 WAR stars (from any source).
   46. PreservedFish Posted: February 19, 2018 at 02:33 PM (#5626971)
The problem though Snapper is that there's such a limited upside. Hosmer has a broad base of fair to middling skills for a 1B. He doesn't do anything really well, from AVE to OBP to SLG to 2B to HR to BB to defense. I understand that players with a broad base of skills can be underrated but for him each skill isn't quite good enough to leave him underrated. So for him to have a couple of seasons where he approaches MVP quality he'll have to fluke into a .350 average or something. More likely he'll slip. Less likely he'll significantly improve a central skill, like hitting home runs or something.


It seems to me that there's no special reason for optimism or pessimism in Hosmer's mix of skills.

I keep seeing, for example, that Hosmer hits too many ground balls. Is this a flaw that will hold him back? Or is it an opportunity for easy, predictable improvement?

He might improve across the board. He might improve one central skill. He might fall flat on his face. Who knows?

He's young, he's a good athlete, and scouts like him. I tend to think he's as good a bet to improve as you're likely to find among players in free agency.
   47. Moeball Posted: February 20, 2018 at 05:39 PM (#5627692)
As a long time Padres fan I will go on record with this prediction: Hosmer will be lucky to even reach 2 WAR in 2018. When it is May or June and he has a .220/.280/.380 slash line I won't be surprised. This contract is going to be a waste of $. When they already had to move Myers to first base previously because he can't field, and now they are replacing him with another mediocre fielder which will move Myers back to the OF, this has disaster written all over it.

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