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Transaction Oracle
— A Timely Look at Transactions as They Happen

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Yankees - Signed Sabathia

New York Yankees - Signed P C.C. Sabathia to a 6-year, $142 million contract.

Well that was something of a letdown. I think most of us were poised
for a lot of posturing and a lengthy negotiation that in the end would
see CC re-signing with the Yankees.

Did he leave anything on the table either in terms of length of
contract or dollar per year? Could be, but I’m skeptical that he left
a lot. In effect he signed for 5 years at $117 million (but with a
potential $5 million buyout at the end) and Cliff Lee got $120
million. That’s a sensible baseline for Sabathia’s value on the free
market. Yes, it’s reported that Lee didn’t take the highest offer, but
that’s still a pretty fair estimate of what the Yankees would be
competing against.

In the end he got an extra year at very nice money and an off-season
free of angst. Plenty of people would see that as a worthwhile trade,
particularly as there’s no guarantee that he would have done better on
the open market. I’m sure CC is as aware as anybody of the fact that
his size is a potential issue to some people. To be clear, I’m not
among them. I can think of a few really big pitchers who had knee
problems (probably) related to their size, but really all pitchers are
a risk and the size issue is a minor one as best I can tell.

Ron Johnson Posted: November 01, 2011 at 03:23 PM | 15 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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Reader Comments and Retorts

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   1. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: November 01, 2011 at 03:48 PM (#3984240)
Can someone remind me what he would have got had he not opted out?
   2. Famous Original Joe C Posted: November 01, 2011 at 03:52 PM (#3984246)
4/92, Voxter.
   3. Randy Jones Posted: November 01, 2011 at 03:54 PM (#3984249)
Yes, it's reported that Lee didn't take the highest offer


I thought that the Yankees had actually offered Lee more total money, but the Phillies offered a higher AAV, just a shorter contract? In other words, Lee did take the highest offer, if you define that as highest yearly salary.
   4. I Am Not a Number Posted: November 01, 2011 at 04:11 PM (#3984271)
In the end he got an extra year at very nice money and an off-season free of angst.

I think it's easy to overlook the importance of this kind of thing. He's in the city he wants to be in. He's making a ton of cash. And now his mind is clear until the spring.
   5. Walt Davis Posted: November 01, 2011 at 07:28 PM (#3984467)
Signed P C.C. Sabathia to a 6-year, $142 million contract.

Unless reports are wrong, no they did not!

This is not how baseball contracts are reported.

CC signed for 5/$122. The 4/$92 of the original contract, a 1/$25 extension and a 1/$25 vesting option with a $5 M buyout.

Baseball contract reporting has never included option years in the contract total, only the guaranteed amount and it would be bad to change that. The guaranteed portion of CC's contract is 5/$122. That is what he signed for.

And I don't care how likely it is for that option to vest, it's an option. Lee's contract also has a vesting option of $27.5 M (with a whopping $12.5 M buyout which is part of the $120 M) and so can surpass 5/$120 as well.

And note the "importance" of that 5/$122 number ... it's $2 M more than Lee got. CC wins by even more if both options vest (6/142 vs 6/135). This contract is for slightly more than what Lee got, not slightly less.
   6. Dan Szymborski Posted: November 01, 2011 at 09:38 PM (#3984571)
That was my fault.
   7. Ron J Posted: November 01, 2011 at 10:39 PM (#3984605)
#5/#6 It's not obvious to me how to report an extension like this. (The first report I saw was a 1 year $30 million extension, and that's not a crazy way to look at it either) Still, your suggestion of 5/$122 makes a great deal of sense and I'm going to adopt it.
   8. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 02, 2011 at 03:31 PM (#3984991)
I'd have reported it as 5/117 plus a 1 year, $25 million option that can be bought out for $5M. So if the option vests he'd get 6/142.

I think Walt's point of also including the $5M buyout since it's guaranteed is ok, but then the clarity of the option year gets a little lost to me. Because here Walt includes the 5M buyout in the 5/122, but then lists the 5M buyout again later:

CC signed for 5/$122. The 4/$92 of the original contract, a 1/$25 extension and a 1/$25 vesting option with a $5 M buyout.

For comparison sake, here is how Cot's reports the Cliff Lee deal. Basically the same as Walt does it:

Cliff Lee lhp
5 years/$120M (2011-15), plus 2016 option

* signed by Philadelphia as a free agent 12/14/10

* 11:$11M, 12:$21.5M, 13:$25M, 14:$25M, 15:$25M, 16:$27.5M club option ($12.5M buyout)

* option becomes guaranteed if Lee 1) is not on the disabled list at end of 2015 season with injury to left elbow or left shoulder, and 2) has 200 IP in 2015 or 400 IP in 2014-15

* limited no-trade protection

* award bonuses: $50,000 each for Gold Glove, Silver Slugger, All-Star, LCS MVP; $0.1M for WS MVP; $0.1M for Cy Young ($75,000 for 2nd in vote, $50,000 for 3rd)
   9. Walt Davis Posted: November 02, 2011 at 05:50 PM (#3985091)
The "headline" reporting is always the guaranteed years and guaranteed money so 5/$122 ... not just here, but in the mainstream media (and at Cots and on b-r) so I'm just arguing in favor of tradition. The Cots addition of "plus option" is a perfectly good idea. Then you cover the gruesome details in the body. Opt-out years are the tough ones but seem to always be handled as guaranteed years.

Hmmm ... Cots hasn't updated yet, they're usually right on top of this stuff.

This is in contrast to football where it's always reported as 8/$80. Go figure.

At one level it doesn't matter but it makes it a lot easier to compare contracts on a consistent basis.

Anyway ... welcome Ron!
   10. Ray (RDP) Posted: November 02, 2011 at 07:06 PM (#3985136)
Walt, the way you're arguing for is sensible and has convention behind it, so I agree that's probably the way to go.
   11. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: November 02, 2011 at 11:33 PM (#3985347)
Ron's doing TO now?! Awesome sauce.
   12. Arbitol Dijaler Posted: November 02, 2011 at 11:52 PM (#3985365)
So now when there's a transaction, we get no projections either on BBTF or ESPN. Sounds good.
   13. Ned Garvin: Male Prostitute Posted: November 03, 2011 at 06:56 PM (#3985944)
Wait ... CC gets $50k if he wins a Silver Slugger? That seems ......... unlikely.
   14. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: November 03, 2011 at 07:12 PM (#3985954)
So now when there's a transaction, we get no projections either on BBTF or ESPN. Sounds good.

Dan said he was still going to provide the ZiPs. Maybe he didn't b/c the Yankees ZiPs are out already?
   15. Dan Szymborski Posted: November 03, 2011 at 08:32 PM (#3986026)
I didn't think they were all that interesting - he's performed as expected and his long-term projections are pretty much the same as they were at the time of his signing.

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