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Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Rosenthal Claims Angels Give Up on Next Five Seasons

FACT:
Gary Matthews, Jr. is a 32-year-old outfielder with a career OPS+ of 96 and Equivalent Average of .258—over his career he has just been below average as a hitter.  Last year, his 119 OPS+ mark marked the first time he had ever exceeded 109, and only the third time he had exceeded 100 in his career.

FACT:
Despite making highlight reels, Matthews’ defense last year rated mediocre or worse by both zone rating and PMR, not to mention by Davenport’s non-play-by-play defensive metric, for whatever that’s worth.

FACT:
Per Rosenthal, Matthews, Jr. will be making $10M per from Arte Moreno through age 37.

Los Angeles Waterloo of Black Hawk Posted: November 22, 2006 at 07:34 PM | 163 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: angels, giants, rangers

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   1. AROM Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:02 PM (#2244110)
I really can't anything to that analysis. I think this is the earliest I've given up on an Angels season. They are done for 2007. And its still 2006.

Pathetic.
   2. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:04 PM (#2244114)
Wow, I'd prefer the Pierre contract.

I didn't think I'd ever say that so quickly...
   3. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:05 PM (#2244119)
Is Matthews really better than Pierre? I don't see it, although maybe I'm mistakenly basing that on how they both performed as Cubs - not that Pierre was anything special, but Mathews as a Cub seemed like he'd never be anything more than a mediocre 4th or 5th outfielder.

Before this season, his most-similar by age for the last three years was T-Bone Shelby. Now, I have fond memories of T-Bone Shelby from my youth as an Orioles fan, but T-Bone Shelby was never worth anything remotely close to $10 million per year no matter how much inflation there's been since the 1980s - German hyperinflation of the 1920s and 30s wouldn't make T-Bone Shelby worth $10 million per year.
   4. Greg Maddux School of Reflexive Profanity Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:06 PM (#2244121)
*gleeful cackle from other thread continues*
   5. Dewey, Soupuss Not Doomed to Succeed Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:07 PM (#2244122)
Great lead-in, BHW.
   6. TDF, situational idiot Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:08 PM (#2244125)
So we now have the following pieces of evidence:

1. The bids for Matsuzaka
2. The Pierre contract
3. The Soriano contract
4. The Matthews contract

Yep, throw out all you know about how much talent is "worth" in Major League Baseball.
   7. caprules Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:09 PM (#2244126)
We kept hearing that the market was going to explode. Every time that I thought of a contract offer that would be outrageous, I kept underestimating. I figured Soriano would get 6/90. I guessed Pierre would get 4/32. I thought Matthews might get 3/24.

So how much is Zito going to get? 6/108, 7/133?
   8. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:09 PM (#2244129)
But look at his web gems!!!!
   9. OlePerfesser Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:10 PM (#2244130)
Wow. Holy wow.

Stoneman's rep as a savvy GM (at least among scribes and Baseball Lifers) is going to take a mjor hit with this deal.

From an economic standpoint, the $$$ and length of this deal are just head-spinningly awful.
   10. Latnam's first name is Bob Lemon's middle name Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:10 PM (#2244133)
As I said in the other thread before it imploded: If Matthews is worth 10-mil a year than Carlos Lee and JD Drew's contracts will threaten the sanity of mortal men.

Well, I didn't put it exactly like that, but close enough.
   11. Spahn Insane Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:11 PM (#2244135)
Good--Hendry's saved from himself. I read rumors that the Cubs were still interested in him even after the Soriano signing, which makes no damn sense.
   12. Mudpout Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:12 PM (#2244137)
This is especially fun after looking at his comps on Baseball Reference. Michael Tucker was born too early.
   13. GGC don't think it can get longer than a novella Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:12 PM (#2244139)
LA Waterloo of BH, Registered Hollywood Contrarian Posted: November 22, 2006 at 02:34 PM


How the hell am I reading this in the future?
   14. bibigon Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:13 PM (#2244142)
Here's a question...

The Twins bought out two of Santana's arb years, and two FA years at $10M/year. If they hadn't, Santana would be a free agent today. Anyone got some over/unders for the contract he'd command?

Would anyone have been surprised if he got 8/$200M or so?
   15. JPWF13 Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:14 PM (#2244143)
Yep, throw out all you know about how much talent is "worth" in Major League Baseball.


How the hell could Oswalt's agent let him sign a 73/5 extension??????
   16. standuptriple Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:14 PM (#2244145)
At least they have somebody to carry the Garret Anderson torch for the next 5 seasons.
   17. tonyeee Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:15 PM (#2244147)
As an Oakland Athletics of Fremonts East Bay in San Jose fan, I like this deal =) keep throwing your money away Halo's, now go trade Chone Figgins and Santana for another joker.
   18. Pleasant Nate (Upgraded from 'Nate') Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:15 PM (#2244148)
So how much is Zito going to get? 6/108, 7/133?


That's probably about right. At this point, 6/120 wouldn't even shock me.
   19. AROM Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:15 PM (#2244149)
One thing I can add on GM jr is that Texas may be a tough CF, hurting ZR runs by -6 per year. I don't know why, but maybe balls just jump off the bat there, resulting in a good hitters park overall and harder hit balls for OF's to handle.

So he could be an average fielder. Which is great. We've got a guy signed for 10 million a year who is average, and likely to get worse every year of the deal.
   20. Los Angeles Waterloo of Black Hawk Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:15 PM (#2244150)
It seems to be a terrible signing, but to give up already is ridiculous. All you Angels fans said the season was over last May and suddenly you were in it until the end. There's 24 other players on the roster, as far as I know.

Allow us our self immolation!

I didn't realize until after submitting this that the plan is, allegedly, to bat the guy leadoff. The guy who has exceed the league OBP twice in his career.

Oy.
   21. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:16 PM (#2244151)
Wow. I'd much rather have Pierre's contract than this one. At least with Pierre there's a reasonably good chance he'll be a league average CF (combining offense and defense) over the life of his deal. Maybe that's not worth $9/year, but it's close (and it might be a bargain in 3-4 years). I just don't see much chance of that happening with Matthews.
   22. Shredder Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:16 PM (#2244152)
Indefensible. #### this ####### team.

Is Matthews really better than Pierre?

He's not even better than Reggie Willits. What a bunch of idiots.

Time to start rooting for the Padres.
   23. zonk Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:17 PM (#2244153)
Wow. Just wow.

I can't stop kicking myself for not spending more time in the cage as a younger man.

I still prefer to the Soriano deal over the Pierre deal, but I prefer the Pierre deal over the Matthews deal. And Option J still looks miles better than all of 'em.

...and can you believe this market is going nuts without a)the Yankees getting involved or b)Neither Jim Hendry nor Ed Wade pissing cash away on middle relievers?

They way teams are throwing money around without seemingly a clue in hell makes me want to fax a signed contract with my name on itto every team for 2-3 mil per for 5 years and just see if things are really as nuts as they appear.
   24. BDC Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:17 PM (#2244154)
Well, I really rooted for Little Sarge as a Ranger, so I am happy to see him endowed with enough wealth to found his own university or rescue an entire small nation from indigence.

I also suspect that part of his '06 improvement was real -- there were stretches in both '05 and '06 where for a few weeks at a time, it simply seemed that Matthews had learned how to hit at last: where he was selective, adjusted well within an at-bat, and got around on the ball sharply.

But the Angels must believe that by 2011, $10M a year will be a cheap below-average-fifth-outfielder salary.
   25. Dewey, Soupuss Not Doomed to Succeed Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:17 PM (#2244155)
I didn't realize until after submitting this that the plan is, allegedly, to bat the guy leadoff. The guy who has exceed the league OBP twice in his career.

What of Chone Figgins? If the Angels don't want him, I'd love to see him in a White Sox uniform.
   26. tonyeee Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:18 PM (#2244156)
Zito is going to get 9 years $150 million.
   27. RobertMachemer Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:18 PM (#2244158)
I really can't anything to that analysis. I think this is the earliest I've given up on an Angels season. They are done for 2007. And its still 2006.

Pathetic.
Although I agree that signing Gary Matthews for five years of "above-average" bucks is a bad move, I think you're being ridiculously fatalistic about the team's chances in 2007. They still have a ton of good young players and pitchers (to play or trade as they will). Is there a team in the division which is currently obviously better than them? I think not, although I'm speaking off the top of my head without looking closely at the teams right now. I mean the A's have just lost their best (or near it) hitter AND their best (or near it) pitcher from this past year. Even if signing Matthews hurts the team (in money squandered or opportunities to play other players lost or whatever), it still doesn't hurt the team so much that the Angels go from being the (off the top of my head) best team in the division (or near it). This ain't the love-child of Marc Sullivan and Hal Chase here, it's an overpaid sub-mediocrity. If the Angels can win a World Series with Darren Erstad, why can't they do the same with Gary Matthews filling the same role (more or less -- Matthews is likely not as good a defender)?
   28. AROM Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:18 PM (#2244159)
All you Angels fans said the season was over last May and suddenly you were in it until the end.

Some of us Angels fans believe there's a cause and effect in that statement.
   29. Justin T., Director of Somethin Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:20 PM (#2244161)
84 wins could take the AL West next season, methinks.
   30. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:21 PM (#2244164)
Hopefully this means that they're more likely to trade for Tejada b/c Moreno is going for broke next year with veterans.
   31. Shredder Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:21 PM (#2244165)
there were stretches in both '05 and '06 where for a few weeks at a time, it simply seemed that Matthews had learned how to hit at last: where he was selective, adjusted well within an at-bat, and got around on the ball sharply.

Mickey Hatcher will make sure that doesn't happen again.

Seriously, this guy sucks. It's easily one of the three or four worst transactions in team history.
   32. AROM Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:21 PM (#2244166)
Time for a new screen name.

I think I hear Oakland fans celebrating this signing. That's not a good omen.
   33. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:22 PM (#2244167)
If the Angels can win a World Series with Darren Erstad, why can't they do the same with Gary Matthews filling the same role (more or less -- Matthews is likely not as good a defender)?
Erstad was a helluva player, worth every penny so long as he was in the outfield. But I agree with your basic point - the Angels core is quite good. Adding an overpaid complementary player hardly changes that.
   34. tonyeee Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:23 PM (#2244169)
Id much rather see Matthews Jr. up there batting leadoff, Chone has scared me for the last couple years, glad that has came to an end.
   35. billyshears Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:24 PM (#2244170)
At the beginning of this offseason when rumors were floating about Matthews being a potential free agent target, I though some team would overpay and give him something like 3 yr/$15 mil. This is just incomprehensible.
   36. BDC Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:25 PM (#2244172)
Meanwhile Texas forges ahead with Brad Wilkerson and Frank Catalanotto, which is hardly going to strike terror into the hearts of Angel fans ...
   37. zonk Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:25 PM (#2244174)
there were stretches in both '05 and '06 where for a few weeks at a time, it simply seemed that Matthews had learned how to hit at last: where he was selective, adjusted well within an at-bat, and got around on the ball sharply.

Yeah... I remeber a mid-September 2004 game against the Pirates where I was thinking the same thing about Neifi Perez
   38. Oriole Tragic is totally awesome in the postseason Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:26 PM (#2244175)
Wow...I'm quaking in my shoes waiting to see what the O's are going pay Carlos Lee. Bet he gets $100M from somebody, if he gets anything. Well, no, I won't bet, as I don't want Mister Gonfalon-Juan-Pierre-Wager-Guy to come calling at my door.

It wasn't long ago when Sarge Jr played here in Baltimore. Defensively, that Mora-Singleton-Matthews outfield looked pretty sweet. Not sure what the numbers say, but they seemed to get to everything. Wonder if Tango's fan scouting program has anything on that.

Matthews was a waaaaay better hitter than Singleton in 2002, and even a little better than Mora, but that's not saying anything. Matthews was 15-for-20 in stolen bags, too. He was OK, but then he had a pretty bad start the following year, and I'm pretty sure that was the year he was DFA'ed.

I was sorry to see him go, because I thought he was useful. I would never have thought he's get $50M for ten years, not to mention five.
   39. AROM Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:28 PM (#2244177)
Seriously, this guy sucks. It's easily one of the three or four worst transactions in team history.

A brief listing of his competition:

Releasing Brian Downing so that you can trade Dante Bichette for the corpse of Dave Parker.

Signing Mo Vaughn

Signing Steve Finley

Letting Nolan Ryan leave

Trading Devon White for Junior Felix (and I liked that one at the time -didn't know Junior was really a senior)

Bringing in Bill Buckner for his clutch play down the stretch in 1987.

resigning Garret Anderson, Darin Erstad, and Tim Salmon exactly at the point where they lose most of their value.

Give me time and I'm sure I can think of some more.
   40. Shredder Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:29 PM (#2244179)
Damion Easley for Greg Gohr.
   41. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:29 PM (#2244180)
Matthews was pretty solid with the Pirates back in '01. Not $10M/year solid, but good enough to be a starter.
   42. Danny Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:29 PM (#2244181)
Erstad was a helluva player, worth every penny so long as he was in the outfield. But I agree with your basic point - the Angels core is quite good. Adding an overpaid complementary player hardly changes that.

I'm happy that they filled one of their biggest potential spots for improvement with an averagish player who's likely to decline over the life of his contract.
   43. Los Angeles Waterloo of Black Hawk Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:31 PM (#2244182)
Honestly, before last season, what were the odds that Matthews would even be a major leaguer in 2011?

Anyway, this doesn't derail 2007. But in world of DJ Drew and talks of trades for Vernon Wells or Miguel Tejada, it just seems like .... a huge missed opportunity, I guess. I mean, I don't know.

And it's also what it represents. The guy has one year in his life, and it's age 31, and that's worthy of this kind of deal? That's how our management thinks? I've been worrying that Stoneman would just want to do something after missing out on Konerko last year, for the sake of doing something, and that seems to be what has happened. That doesn't bode well for the organization's decision-making as we enter an era for the team where a lot of choices are going to need to be made about prospects and veterans.
   44. tonyeee Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:33 PM (#2244186)
oh I can add to that list.

Letting go of Troy Glaus thinking that Dallas Mcpherson was the savior

Letting Bengi Molina go thinking that Jeff Mathias would do better

Casey Kotchman

Bobby Jenks

Derrick Turnbow

Trading Edmonds for Bottenfield and Kennedy, then swinging Bottenfield for RON GANT!
   45. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:35 PM (#2244188)

Yep, throw out all you know about how much talent is "worth" in Major League Baseball.


If you are talking about Pierre and Matthews, 'talent' is supposed to be in quotation marks.

Just got Erstad off the books and they go and do this. Unbelievable. It almost makes me glad that my Braves are always broke so that they don't get involved in this insanity.
   46. scareduck Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:35 PM (#2244189)
Fire Bill <strike>Bavasi</strike> Stoneman. Seriously, I can't imagine a worse contract. I would have preferred seeing how bad Reggie Willits could possibly be. A spectactular waste of resources.
   47. Los Angeles Waterloo of Black Hawk Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:35 PM (#2244190)
It's on the <a href="http://losangeles.angels.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/news/article.jsp?ymd=20061122&c>Angels website</a> now, so I guess Rosenthal isn't lying, even though the article (on the official website!) says "[a]n Angels spokesman would not confirm or deny that a deal has been finalized."
   48. Willie Mayspedester Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:43 PM (#2244199)
With the current trend of ridiculous contracts it seems teams are just lining up to become the lower rung for years at a time. Same thing happened a few years ago if I remember correctly.
   49. AROM Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:44 PM (#2244200)
Glaus - it hurts

Molina - Mathis didn't do anything, but Napoli did. No regrets on losing Bengie

Kotchman - I don't get it. He got hurt. This is like blaming Beane for not getting any innings out of Rich Harden.

Jenks/Turnbow - It would be nice to have their arms, but these aren't franchise killers. Turnbow's looking like a one year wonder anyway.

Edmonds would have left by free agency well before 2002. Kennedy gave us 7 solid years, great defense, and a 3 homer game. No regrets here.
   50. billyshears Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:44 PM (#2244201)
It's easily one of the three or four worst transactions in team history.

Off the top of my head, this strikes me as the worst free agent signing, as considered at the time the contract was signed, in the past ten years.
   51. Oriole Tragic is totally awesome in the postseason Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:45 PM (#2244204)
Yeah, the Orioles never moved from the head of that line...
   52. AROM Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:46 PM (#2244205)
Its only 1 million per year more than Pierre. It'll be a great debate over the next 5 years of which team has the worse centerielder.
   53. pkb33 Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:54 PM (#2244212)
Hampton and Denny Neagle are on the pretty-short list of candidates for worst deal.
   54. sardonic Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:54 PM (#2244213)
As an A's fan, this is still a bad sign though. If the going rate for Gary Matthews is $10 million, how are we gonna replace Thomas?
   55. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:55 PM (#2244216)
God...if the Orioles don't have a firesale in this market they're completely braindead. Everyone over 25 should be traded. Tejada has to be one of the best bargains in baseball at this point, and Bedard is 27, a potential ace, and costs peanuts. Tejada and Bedard should fetch several good prospects each. And Roberts, Patterson, Hernandez, Benson and Gibbons should all have value. If the Orioles got Kotchman, Santana, and Aybar for Tejada, and 2-3 excellent prospects from a team like the Dodgers or Mets they'd at least have some hope for the future.

And, yes, I realize that the Orioles are, in fact, braindead.
   56. JRVJ (formerly Delta Socrates) Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:56 PM (#2244217)
The scary thing about this off-season is that contracts are going through the roof EVEN THOUGH THE YANKEES ARE NOT DRIVING UP THE MARKET.

This leads me to think that: a) MLB teams can commit hara-kiri quite well without the Yankees driving up the cost of talent;

b) It was foolish to jaw-jaw-jaw that the Yankees had to be reined in for the good of the sport;

c) The Yankees will be pretty much ready to pounce on anything they want during the 2007-2008 offseason, when they have some pretty good dough (read, RJ, Abreu) coming off the books, and even moreso in 2008-2009 (Giambi, Pavano, Mussina).
   57. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:56 PM (#2244219)
That should say "and 2-3 excellent prospects from a team like the Dodgers or Mets for Bedard."
   58. scareduck Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:56 PM (#2244220)
All this money floating around for free agency deals is predicated on the economy getting even better in the future for baseball, and therefore, for the economy to continue improving generally.

Now, then: what happens when oil tops $100/bbl, and gasoline goes, say, to $5/gal. for unleaded regular?
   59. AROM Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:59 PM (#2244223)
Now, then: what happens when oil tops $100/bbl, and gasoline goes, say, to $5/gal. for unleaded regular?


Bernanke will help the teams out by dropping dollars from helicopters. I wonder who the first free agent is who will demand to be paid in gold coins.
   60. pkb33 Posted: November 22, 2006 at 08:59 PM (#2244225)
Now, then: what happens when oil tops $100/bbl, and gasoline goes, say, to $5/gal. for unleaded regular?

Then, like Kenny Anderson during the NBA strike, Gary Matthews Jr will complain about not being able to pay to fuel up all his cars.
   61. Answer Guy Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:00 PM (#2244227)
Wow. This is a bad signing.

Sadly, it's going to make J.D. Drew more expensive for the Red Sox. Not that I am trying to hijack anything.
   62. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:00 PM (#2244228)
what happens when oil tops $100/bbl, and gasoline goes, say, to $5/gal. for unleaded regular?

Everyone blames Selig?
   63. AROM Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:02 PM (#2244230)
Drew for 5/75 would have made more sense. Actually, Drew for 5/100 makes more sense.
   64. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:02 PM (#2244232)
"Off the top of my head, this strikes me as the worst free agent signing, as considered at the time the contract was signed, in the past ten years."

I can't see this as worse than Colorado's Hampton/Kile/Neagle outlay. Kile, in particular, since the curve doesn't break at altitude.
   65. David Wrightwing obstructionist Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:04 PM (#2244234)
Maybe Anahiem believes there are enough transplanted Phils and Cubs fans that there is a market for Lil Sarge, they can recoop some of the cash?

Ok I got nothing, but I could kiss Minaya for the Alou signing now.
   66. Dingbat_Charlie Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:08 PM (#2244240)
And, yes, I realize that the Orioles are, in fact, braindead.

at least this'll make it not seem so bad when they cough up 6/$90 for Fatty Lee. although that probably just went up.
   67. PleasePassTheGravy Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:09 PM (#2244246)
I think I'd rather have Gary Matthews, Sr. at $50mm/5...!

Heck, Dave Matthews out in CF would be more valuable!!
   68. David Wrightwing obstructionist Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:12 PM (#2244249)
Heck, Dave Matthews out in CF would be more valuable!!

Great, a Dave Matthews version of God Bless America
   69. shoewizard Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:13 PM (#2244252)
70 posts in under an hour? Not bad....havn't read the thread yet. Lemme guess. An overpay? ;)
   70. H. Vaughn Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:29 PM (#2244276)
Gotta be the best contract ever for a guy who got DFA'd THREE times: Cubs, Bucs, O's.
   71. zonk Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:29 PM (#2244277)
Great, a Dave Matthews version of God Bless America

One would think a Sarge jr. rendition would have to be much more deeply heartfelt, what with this contract and all.
   72. scareduck Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:32 PM (#2244280)
Bernanke will help the teams out by dropping dollars from helicopters. I wonder who the first free agent is who will demand to be paid in gold coins.

The Blue Jays will have free agents lining up.
   73. David Wrightwing obstructionist Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:36 PM (#2244289)
Now, then: what happens when oil tops $100/bbl, and gasoline goes, say, to $5/gal. for unleaded regular?

Jeb Bush in 08? Please God....NO!
   74. scareduck Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:45 PM (#2244303)
Jeb Bush in 08? Please God....NO!

... and we have Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz, because, hey, we didn't cause enough trouble in the Middle East the first time.
   75. Rear Admiral Piazza Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:46 PM (#2244305)
OMG, this makes the Soriano deal seem farsighted
   76. AROM Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:56 PM (#2244315)
Angels will not be good in 2007. We had an opportunity to spend money and improve the team, and all we succeeded in doing was to spend money.

Question is, can the Angels win the division anyway? Their offense is still weak, but so is Oakland's unless they sign and get a healthy season from Barry Bonds.

We can beat them if their pitching falls apart. Right now they've got 1 very good pitcher (Haren), one outstanding but often injured pitcher (Harden) and a pair of averagish guys (Blanton/Loiaza). Number 5 I guess is up for grabs between Saarloos, Windsor, and Kennedy.

Not a very impressive sounding group, but what does it take to get the A's to allow runs? Doesn't seem to matter who they throw out there. Last 6 years they allowed 645 (2001), 654, 643, 742, 658, and 727 (2006). Hard from just that line to tell when the big 3 came to an end. Zito's gone. Their defense is not as impressive as in years past, especially with big questions on the health of Crosby. What does it take for seemingly mediocre talent to give up 800 runs?

Maybe not having Zito for a guaranteed 35 starts and knowledge to tell the youngsters that "movement is the product of that which does not move" will do the trick.

If they oblige, the Angels can still win this thing on the strength of their pitching.
   77. Halofan Posted: November 22, 2006 at 09:58 PM (#2244320)
I'm gonna have to get a prescription for Prozac, this is the worst deal in the history of major league baseball...
   78. bibigon Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:00 PM (#2244326)
Gotta be the best contract ever for a guy who got DFA'd THREE times: Cubs, Bucs, O's.


Wow, that's really great. That's the single best factoid I've seen yet to disparage any signing of this offseason so far.
   79. scareduck Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:03 PM (#2244332)
This signing is the goatse.cx of contracts.
   80. Rear Admiral Piazza Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:03 PM (#2244333)
This could easily be the offseason of the worst moves ever. Now I am wondering if Thomas couldn't have gotten more elsewhere, because he would have justified it with these checks being cut. And now fat Carlos Lee is about to get a fat wallet, too.
   81. Hello Rusty Kuntz, Goodbye Rusty Cars Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:08 PM (#2244338)
How much money did Matthews earn with that one catch around the All-Star break?
   82. Los Angeles Waterloo of Black Hawk Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:09 PM (#2244340)
Here's a nifty comparison.

After the 2003 season, there was an outfielder who had a long record of mediocrity, but had broken through the year before. His career OPS+ stood at 92, but he had just put up a 141. He was also just 27 years old, and had been an acclaimed prospect who had been in the majors since an early age -- probably too early of an age.

That outfielder received a two-year deal worth $6M.

This was Jose Guillen. This was that year when every outfielder with a pulse was getting a two-year deal for $6M.

Now, Matthews had a slightly better track record than Guillen before the career year. But he's also five years older than Guillen was. It seems like those things might cancel out, and if they were in the same market, they would get similar contracts.

I have trouble believing the market has shifted that much in three years, but I guess it has. It's at times like that where you should say, "You know, I can go to the market next year. I've got this discount Reggie Willits and longtime Figgins sitting around to use, so I'm only going into that market of I get a coupon in the Sunday paper."

Instead, Stoneman says, "Last year I got out-bid on this Konerko that would have blocked by driveway for awhile, so this year I better pay whatever it takes to get anything."

So, so terrible.
   83. pkb33 Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:14 PM (#2244349)
Reportedly the Giants offered Matthews the exact same 5/$50 mil deal.

So it's not just one team who valued (fetishized?) him this way.

Double yikes.
   84. tonyeee Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:17 PM (#2244354)
The Angels will not win the division this season, shortly after 2007 Bill Stoneman will finally be fired as well.
   85. karkface killah Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:19 PM (#2244358)
Bring me the head of Bill Stoneman.
   86. sardonic Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:19 PM (#2244359)
Reportedly the Giants offered Matthews the exact same 5/$50 mil deal.

So it's not just one team who valued (fetishized?) him this way.

Double yikes.


Brian Sabean: What are you trying to tell me, that I can dodge bullets?

Bill Stoneman: No Brian. I'm trying to tell you that when I'm done, you won't have to.
   87. tonyeee Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:22 PM (#2244365)
Reportedly the Giants offered Matthews the exact same 5/$50 mil deal.

So it's not just one team who valued (fetishized?) him this way.

Double yikes.


The Giants also lost out on Juan Pierre, looks like they might have to keep Randy Winn or go after Dave Roberts.
   88. karkface killah Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:26 PM (#2244374)
Would anyone have been surprised if he got 8/$200M or so?

5 years, $135 million.
   89. bibigon Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:29 PM (#2244379)
Seriously, is JD Drew at 5/$100M less reasonable than this deal?
   90. Dewey, Soupuss Not Doomed to Succeed Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:30 PM (#2244380)
You know, maybe there's just more a lot money in baseball than we thought.
   91. greenback calls it soccer Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:31 PM (#2244383)
The next round of CBA negotiations will be ugly, ugly, ugly.
   92. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:33 PM (#2244384)
Seriously, is JD Drew at 5/$100M less reasonable than this deal?

No, but it's much less likely. Somebody pointed it out in the TO thread on this - comparing this and the Pierre deal to the deals that Nomar and Big Frank have gotten this offseason indicates that GMs are willing to pay more for health than for talent. I wouldn't be surprised to see Drew sign a deal for less money than Matthews just signed for (although probably spread over fewer years - I still assume he'll make more per year).
   93. Dewey, Soupuss Not Doomed to Succeed Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:35 PM (#2244388)
GMs are willing to pay more for health than for talent.

Which would explain why the A's have stocked up on injury-prone players over the past few years...
   94. Justin T., Director of Somethin Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:36 PM (#2244390)
Why couldn't the Giants have gone to 5/55?

What is going to be crazy is when Drew signs for something not far from the Matthews or Pierre deals. The guys signing Pierre and Matthews are the ones who think they are better options than Drew because Drew doesn't care and his wrist might break if a ball hits it.

Drew's suitors will be the semi-sane guys, and there aren't many of the to be bidding against each other. Just my feeling anyway. I don't think this makes Drew a 5/80 guy, or whatever people are hypothesizing his worth will be based on these contracts.
   95. Justin T., Director of Somethin Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:38 PM (#2244393)
Damn it, thought I would be first to make this observation.
   96. bigcpa Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:39 PM (#2244394)
Having spent 3 days trying to comprehend the Pierre deal, I would prefer Matthews at this point. I'll ignore the AVG spike which looks like a mirage. But the guy put up .303/.347/.480 on the road last year and has a 10% walk rate for his career. The Fielding Bible rated him the 4th best CF in the majors. He had 44 doubles and 19 homers last year and a .181 ISO the last two years. So there is some hope unlike Pierre whose ceiling is league avg.
   97. Шĥy Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:40 PM (#2244395)
I have trouble believing the market has shifted that much in three years, but I guess it has.

I don't think it has. There are still many players on relatively cheap free agent contracts from before this market "shift," so this new market can't last unless revenues continue to increase. Also, I think the weak FA class is inflating the market. I don't think if better players were free agents, they would have necessarily gotten better deals than the players who are free agents have. I also think some stupid GMs buying into all of this hype that the market is exploding has had a significant impact.
   98. birdlives is one crazy ninja Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:44 PM (#2244397)
Wow...I'm quaking in my shoes waiting to see what the O's are going pay Carlos Lee. Bet he gets $100M from somebody, if he gets anything. Well, no, I won't bet, as I don't want Mister Gonfalon-Juan-Pierre-Wager-Guy to come calling at my door.

If Stros are offering $12 million per year over 5, then the Matthews contract will probably push the Astro's offer which will eliminate the O's.

God...if the Orioles don't have a firesale in this market they're completely braindead. Everyone over 25 should be traded. Tejada has to be one of the best bargains in baseball at this point, and Bedard is 27, a potential ace, and costs peanuts. Tejada and Bedard should fetch several good prospects each. And Roberts, Patterson, Hernandez, Benson and Gibbons should all have value.

I was thinking the same thing. The O's could haul in nice set of prospects now.
   99. The NeverEnding Torii (oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh oh) Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:46 PM (#2244399)
Since when do you give a 32 year-old a 5-year deal? Maybe if the 32 year-old is Barry Bonds, but Gary Matthews? He hit 3.13, hit a few homers and made one of the best catches I've ever seen. Apparently, these things duped some people into believing that he's a fantastic centerfielder who could help power an offense.

I'm shaking my head at this, but this is nowhere near one of the worst transactions in Angels history. First of all, Gary Matthews Jr. has played exactly zero games as an Angel. Mo Vaughn, Nolan Ryan, Bichette-for-Parker, getting rid of Devon White, letting Wally walk and getting nothing for him - those are still pretty untouchable as far as Angel blunders go. (Some Angel fans will foolishly bring up the Edmonds trade as a "blunder". You know, the trade that allowed Scioscia and Stoneman to re-create the team in their own image and make them World champions, after several years of watching Edmonds & Friends choke down the stretch.)
   100. Los Angeles Waterloo of Black Hawk Posted: November 22, 2006 at 10:54 PM (#2244406)
a .181 ISO the last two years.

Well, when the park-adjusted league average ISOs have been .160 and .165, that doesn't really thrill me to the extent where I think a 32-year-old needs a five year deal.
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