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Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Guardians finalizing 7-year extension with Giménez

Guardians president of baseball operations Chris Antonetti said he was confident at least one contract extension would get done before the start of the season. As it turns out, he was right.

Second baseman Andrés Giménez is close to finalizing a contract extension with the Guardians, a source told MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand on Tuesday. The deal, which will begin in 2024, is for seven years and worth $106.5 million, with a club option for an eighth year. The club has not confirmed the deal.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 28, 2023 at 02:14 PM | 17 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: andres gimenez, guardians

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   1. Walt Davis Posted: March 28, 2023 at 03:22 PM (#6121611)
Always nice to see a 2B get paid. A bit surprised he would agree to this many years but it's the first $100 M that counts. :-) Assuming it starts this year, it covers the last pre-arb, 3 arb and 3 FA plus the option and keeps him under control through age 31 with the option. There are worse ages to become FA but it's not great.

Hard to comp him because last year's breakout was so huge. He did well but didn't play much in his first 1.106 of service time then put up 7.5 WAR last year on a 141 OPS+. Is he the next Jose Ramirez or is he going to settle into a 3-WAR player? Obviously Cleveland didn't want to wait and find out he is a 6-7 WAR player then try to sign him (fair enough). I think the most he'd have made in arb is about $35 M (halfway between Seager and Turner who was a super-2) so it's about 3/$72 for the FA years which will obviously be a bargain if he is that 6-7 WAR guy.

Certainly a bargain vs Carroll's 8/$111 which covers just 2 FA years for a much less proven player.
   2. Darren Posted: March 28, 2023 at 04:06 PM (#6121623)
ZIPS loves Gimenez, projecting him for 4.7 WAR next year, 3rd among second basemen. And why not, he's put up 8.9 fWAR in 899 PA so far. Yes, his monster 2022 boosted that greatly but in 2020 he had 1.2 WAR in 132 PA. Even in 2021, he put up 0.8 WAR in just 210 PA, nothing to sneeze at. At 24, with that track record, I suspect settling in at 3.0 WAR is close to his downside. I agree it's tough to find comps but maybe Semien? He got 3/6/13 with similar offensive output. His free agent deal, at age 31, was for $25M/year. That adds up to $97M for 3 arb/3 FA. Gimenez is a few years younger and better, so he should be a fair bit more. Swanson was closer in age but not as good--he got 3/6/10, then $27M/year in FA--$100 mil for 3 arb/3 fa. Gimenez is a year younger and just plain better so far. Comps to young superstar deals look rough but Gimenez doesn't have the youth or pedigree that Franco or Rodriguez had.

Overall, maybe he left some cash on the table, but nothing too bad.

I wonder how Jose Ramirez feels about signing a slightly larger deal now.

   3. Darren Posted: March 28, 2023 at 04:09 PM (#6121624)
And it goes without saying, that Lindor deal continues to look amazing.
   4. The Duke Posted: March 28, 2023 at 04:22 PM (#6121627)
Mlbtr has Indians in multiple long term extension conversations. The Braves model is about to take over Baseball. Orioles should be next
   5. SoSH U at work Posted: March 28, 2023 at 04:28 PM (#6121628)
Mlbtr has Indians in multiple long term extension conversations. The Braves model is about to take over Baseball.


Wasn't that the Indians model before it was the Braves model?
   6. catomi01 Posted: March 28, 2023 at 05:08 PM (#6121633)
Always nice to see a 2B get paid.


2B aging always makes me nervous...its definitely small sample bias, but watching NY baseball in the 90's/2000's Alomar, Alfonzo and Baerga and Knoblauch all falling off a cliff made it seem like the norm that high level 2B had an early expiration date.
   7. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: March 28, 2023 at 06:23 PM (#6121641)
I wonder how Jose Ramirez feels about signing a slightly larger deal now.


That Ramirez deal was a bargain the moment the ink dried. Jose is a consistent 5+ WAR player every year and they are paying just over $20 mil per. It's a crazy good contract for Cleveland. Jose just does everything incredibly well.
   8. Adam Starblind Posted: March 28, 2023 at 07:00 PM (#6121643)
He was just not supposed to be this good!! He was a small guy, good contact hitter, excellent glove, didn’t walk a ton. And now he’s a 7.4 WAR player. Not right!
   9. Walt Davis Posted: March 28, 2023 at 07:20 PM (#6121649)
#2 ... All reasonable points. I wasn't suggesting he left cash on the table, teams should be getting discounts for jumping 4 years early ... which this deal will be if he keeps this up but not so much if he's more 3-4 WAR. (Depends a bit on how much that option is.) As to his performance to date, I wasn't paying much attention to Gimenez in those days, was his time limited due to injury or did teams just not see how good he was. He must have barely missed super-2 at 2.106 so it's not like he was up and down to the minors.

On Ramirez ... that was a double-dip. They had the original buyout covering 1 pre-arb, 3 arb and 1 FA for $26 M with options for 2022-23 at a mere $22 extra. Faced with those options, the extension was essentially 5/$120 covering 2024-28 with a sizable chunk front-loaded (he makes $12 M more in 2022-23 than he would have). If he hadn't take the extension, Ramirez wouldn't have been FA until the end of this season (entering age 31), possibly would have been traded ... but still might well have gotten an X/Turner like deal (for a couple fewer years).

Although I'm not sure that many have actually worked out, those double dips look great. Sign the guy to a nice but easily affordable extension early on then, if he breaks out, use the leverage of those cheap FA options to get a very reasonable early extension. Still, he's signed through 35 which is standard (or even light) but could still backfire.

Comping the two, the timing of the first extension is essentially identical and the next 8 years of Ramirez will end up costing Cleveland $77 M so Gimenez about $30 M more 6 years later.

And yes, the Braves aren't innovators they are simply "lucky" enough to have 5-6 guys deserving of such deals at the same time. Cle was doing these deals in the 90s; the Cards did this with Pujols; I think Sosa might have had a deal like this even. Altuve, Bregman, now Alvarez in Hou (but not Springer, Correa or Tucker yet). It's also fair to say the Braves (and Guardians) are clearly quite good at negotiating these deals since, to my memory, they've yet to try and fail to wrap somebody up (Swanson maybe?) No Soto, Machado, Harper for them ... which I suspect also means no Boras. :-)

#6: A few years ago one of us (SoSH or Jose I think) went through that question pretty thoroughly and convinced me it's more urban myth than true. And as I regularly point out, even some of the cliff-divers were worth it. Alomar was nice enough to cliff dive when he got to the Mets but at ages 31-33 he put up 20 WAR so you'd still gladly sign him for ages 31-36 for about 6/$180 in today's money. And of course Gimenez barely cracks 30 before this deal is done, the cliff dive question is about whether you extend him again in 5 years.
   10. Booey Posted: March 28, 2023 at 08:31 PM (#6121652)
#6 - Hard to say. Sandberg, Utley, and Pedroia are others who might fit the "2B tend to fall off a cliff early" narrative, but Whitaker and Kent are obvious counter examples, as is Cano if you look at rate stats post 35 rather than playing time (I know, I know, he might've had some chemical help). Still, I'd say the evidence supporting that assertion is inconclusive.
   11. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: March 28, 2023 at 09:45 PM (#6121657)
Pedroia’s cliff was more of a Manny Machado.
   12. catomi01 Posted: March 28, 2023 at 11:13 PM (#6121666)
9/10 - I tend to agree, and I think I remember the deeper look into it referenced in 9 - its just something that stuck in my mind watching it happen a couple of time, and some "logic" to it. Many 2B are basically SS who couldn't hack it defensively there...so the move down the defensive spectrum if its necessary is a steep dive into the OF or 1B...where the bat usually just doesn't carry. Combine that with the traditional beating their legs and lower half would take with runners going in hard on double plays, and it "makes sense" that they would peak and decline earlier than other positions. Its an easy narrative to buy into when reinforced with a couple of high profile examples during your formative baseball years....but as you point out, there are plenty of counter examples to the theory.
   13. Darren Posted: March 29, 2023 at 10:56 AM (#6121689)
On Ramirez ... that was a double-dip. They had the original buyout covering 1 pre-arb, 3 arb and 1 FA for $26 M with options for 2022-23 at a mere $22 extra. Faced with those options, the extension was essentially 5/$120 covering 2024-28 with a sizable chunk front-loaded (he makes $12 M more in 2022-23 than he would have). If he hadn't take the extension, Ramirez wouldn't have been FA until the end of this season (entering age 31), possibly would have been traded ... but still might well have gotten an X/Turner like deal (for a couple fewer years).


All true. It just seemed like he got squeezed a bit because he liked Cleveland and that's a shame.
   14. My name is Votto, and I love to get Moppo Posted: March 29, 2023 at 01:03 PM (#6121698)
He probably outperformed his hitting ratios last year (high BABIP, high contact rate, good K%, could walk more), but he's a nice all-around player who definitely has room to grow in the power category. It is cool to see a team built around contact, and it probably carried them into the second playoff round last year, but it would be nice to have some more power hitting.
   15. vortex of dissipation Posted: March 29, 2023 at 01:44 PM (#6121700)
"...could walk more..."

That HBP ratio helps to make up for not walking a lot. 38 HBP in 899 career PA - that's a lot.
   16. Walt Davis Posted: March 29, 2023 at 04:40 PM (#6121710)
#12 ... it's mostly true that 2B have nowhere to go as they age ... unless they are Carew, Molitor, Kent (towards the very end). I thought Cano might go that route as well.

It's interesting that we got fixated on 2B (that includes me). The fact is most players, even stars, start to fall apart at ages 34-36 and it's only a handful that survive past that age as actual good players and two handfuls that are still above-average.

Sandberg of course is a weird case. He was a 3.4 WAR player in 1993 in just over 500 PA. That was "bad" only in comparison to the 22 WAR he'd put up 3 seasons prior. He then had his Cindy problem which so upset him he retired the middle of age 34 -- but even with that, he was still slightly above-average to that point. He stayed retired for all of age 35. Coming back after 1.5 years off at age 36 seemed a recipe for disaster but he put up 3.2 WAR -- that's very good age-36 performance. Then he did become a 1-WAR player at 37 but that's not a surprise ... and if he'd been under long-term contract or chasing 3000, maybe he'd have Biggio'd it from that point.

Utley ... different issues (and a much later start) but a pattern not unlike Sandberg. He went off a cliff only in the sense that he put up 24 WAR from 29-31 then started getting hurt. Still from 32-35 it was 14 WAR, 8 WAA on a 4.6 WAR/650 pace. In terms of quality, that's excellent for those ages. From 36-38, he was basically a 1 WAR player.

In general, unless you're Mays or Musial or Nelson Cruz, the "damn he's good" part of your career is wrapped up at age 33. Being above-average at 34-36 is really well above-average for those ages. Doing anything after age 36 is gravy.

At age 34, Billy Williams put up 6.5 WAR. The next season he was below 2 and for ages 35-37 he had less total WAR in 1700 PA than he had in that age 34 season. Nobody worried that LF fall off a cliff ... of course they do and maybe even more likely to than 2B but no narrative. Seems the reaction was more "oh well, Billy got old, we all knew it was coming."

2B have been somewhat "cursed" in that, for probably purely random reasons, so many of them have been so freaking good in their early 30s. I've mentioned Alomar, Sandberg and Utley. Morgan had 30 WAR from 30-32 and another 6 at 33. Carew 22 (he'd become 1B by then); Biggio 21; Cano 20 for 30, 31, 33; Molitor 17. If you fall off the 4-WAR cliff to the 1-WAR cliff, nobody much notices. If you fall off the 7-WAR cliff to the 3-WAR cliff, it's a crisis. (Fair enough if you happen to have that guy tied up for another 5/$150.)
   17. Adam Starblind Posted: March 29, 2023 at 10:03 PM (#6121739)
I think quite a lot of it comes back to Alomar. He went from a 5-7 WAR player to replacement level overnight. It was pretty stunning. It also would have almost certainly happened if he played any other position.

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