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Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Blue Jays ink Jose Berrios to seven year, $131 million contract extension, per report

At the trade deadline last season, Toronto made waves when they traded Austin Martin and Simeon Woods-Richardson (both highly regarded prospects) to the Twin in exchange for Jose Berrios who happened to be one of the top pitchers on the trade market. Berrios rewarded the Blue Jays’ faith by posting a 3.58 ERA with 78 strikeouts and just 13 walks in 70.1 innings with the team. After investing so much prospect capital in Berrios, Toronto wanting to keep him in the fold made all the sense in the world. So…they did it.

Berrios contract extension, as Sherman noted, buys out Berrios last year of arbitration (which could have been pricey on its own) and gives the Blue Jays six years of additional team control. That seems to fit nicely with Toronto’s expected window of contention while giving Berrios’ a nice payday and financial security.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 16, 2021 at 09:58 AM | 7 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: blue jays, jose berrios

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   1. Jose is Absurdly Correct but not Helpful Posted: November 16, 2021 at 10:09 AM (#6053097)
That seems like a very reasonable deal.
   2. JRVJ Posted: November 16, 2021 at 10:38 AM (#6053102)
The two starter deals this week have both been pretty reasonable.
   3. Adam Starblind Posted: November 16, 2021 at 12:06 PM (#6053126)
Makes 5/$100MM seem like a good guess for Stroman, who is three years older.
   4. Jack Sommers Posted: November 16, 2021 at 01:11 PM (#6053148)
Berrios career numbers through age 27 virtually the same as Patrick Corbin through age 28, heading into his age 29 season for the Nationals in 2019. Corbin got 6/140

Here is comparison between the two, with Robbie Ray added in. Ray older of course, but coming off a likely Cy Young Season. My guess is Ray does better than both Berrios and Corbin

Comparison Link

   5. Walt Davis Posted: November 16, 2021 at 09:37 PM (#6053230)
Seems awfully long for a pitcher, even if one year is an arb year. Looking just at the 6/$120 bit, the NPV is just over $100 M, about the same as 5/$120 or 4/$112.

Using the last 4 years, I get 2.4 WAR/150 IP. Figure over the long run, probably no pitcher should be projected to more than an average of 25 starts, 150 IP per year -- that might take the shape of one entirely missed season and then a handful of starts here or there to usually missing 5-10 starts a year to dropping to a 5 IP/start starter. So over 7 years, about 17 expected WAR so just under $8/WAR but the first year is an arb year and projecting 175 starts might be optimistic.

For 2017-19, only 59 pitchers made it to 75 starts (top Verlander 101). For 2013-19, 35 made it to 175 starts (Bartolo 177 to Lester/Quintana 224). The median ERA+ of those 35 guys was 111; median WAR is 19. Berrios is, give or take, being paid to be a durable lower #1 to upper #2 starter (or a #1 fading to a #2/3). FWIW, his peripherals (incl stuff like EV, hard-hit, LD%, HR%) look pretty stable to me so you know what you're getting when he's healthy.

In short, everything looks about right except maybe the length. I'm a bit agnostic on pitcher contract length -- you never _want_ a pitcher on a long-term contract but (a) deferring is another matter; (b) I simply assume a season gets lost but you never know when that season is going to be and years 6-7 just might be when you make back what was lost in an injured year 3; and (c) pitchers just age differently, even erratically.
   6. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 16, 2021 at 10:11 PM (#6053235)
A bit long perhaps, but (a) they gave up two really good prospects to get him, so you'd probably like to get more from that trade by keeping him; and (b) this sends a message to Vlad Jr. and the young core.

I will say, that they will have to pay Vlad, Bichette, and Biggio in 2026, with $24M already allocated to Springer, and Manoah and Pearson possibly looking at good paydays by then too. Hopefully Rogers puts up some money!
   7. Walt Davis Posted: November 17, 2021 at 12:23 AM (#6053261)
Let's not worry too much yet about paying Biggio after his 86 OPS+ year.

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