Rosenthal: Mookie and LAD in agreement: 12/$365

mauf

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How many of you guys would have rationalized selling Ruth or Williams or Yaz?
Ruth and Williams were two of the five best players in the history of the game. Mookie isn’t at that level.

Yaz was one of the most durable players in the history of the game, but even he was only worth 42 bWAR in 9 years from 1969-77 (his age 29-37 seasons). If that’s what Mookie’s future looks like, the Dodgers will be happy with the deal, but it won’t be a steal.

If Mookie has a couple more 10-win seasons like 2016 and 2018 in him, then yeah, the Sox will regret letting him go.
 

jose melendez

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He's the second best player in baseball and wanted to be paid as such. Hard to fault him for that.

There's a case to be made that it wasn't worth it when his immediate years would be on a team with no pitching, I suppose. But realistically, the Sox are going to end up paying a contract this big, and the odds are that it will be on a player who isn't as good as Mookie Betts.
 

nighthob

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I believe the following guys are up for FA in the next three years: Bellinger, Treinen, Pederson, Seagar, Hernandez, Taylor, Muncy, Stripling, Baez. Keeping all of those guys is going to be really tough, even if you let Turner, Pollock, and Kershaw go. But Friedman can work a lot of magic, so I guess we'll see.
Given that they have a SS waiting in the wings (Gavin Lux), I doubt they have any interest in re-signing Seager. The same goes for Pederson. They have DJ Peters waiting in the wings to replace him. A bigger problem for them is going to be finding someone to take Pollock off their hands as he’s essentially a fourth OF making starter money.
 

Detts

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Right, how mad will Dodgers fans be in 3-4 years if Mookie is merely 2017-level Mookie and they can't afford to sign some of those guys as a result of his albatross contract? I could easily see that happening.

Of course if they win 1-2 WS between now and then it likely doesn't matter.

Kirk Gibson 32 years ago.

I guarantee one win would make the contract moot in the next 3-4 yrs.
 

Hank Scorpio

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I’d like to once again thank Dave Dombrowski for that fucking Chris Sale contract extension.

One of, if not the most, idiotic, insane signings in MLB history from the moment it was signed. Not even a 20/20 hindsight issue. Everyone knew it was a bad signing that made zero sense.
 

tims4wins

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I’d like to once again thank Dave Dombrowski for that fucking Chris Sale contract extension.

One of, if not the most, idiotic, insane signings in MLB history from the moment it was signed. Not even a 20/20 hindsight issue. Everyone knew it was a bad signing that made zero sense.
Check out the first few posts of this thread

 

BaseballJones

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Check out the first few posts of this thread


These two posts on page 1 in that thread kind of nail it.....

He'll be 35 at the end of the contract. Amazed the deal is for only 5 years. You wouldn't expect much age performance decline, so it's all about injuries.
This is great news. However, I really hope this in no way hinders our ability to extend or resign Mookie
 

nvalvo

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Get paid, Mookie. This is a much better deal than he was getting Boston, especially after COVID.

I respect it. Couldn't happen to a nicer guy.
 

InstaFace

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I’ve been pretty consistent in saying that, if I were the Red Sox this off-season, I would have offered Mookie 10/350 as a final offer, said farewell if he didn’t take that and tried to work out the cap some other way if he did take it. This pretty conclusively suggests he would have rejected such an offer, so, ultimately, I’m at peace with the fact that he left and happy with the return the Sox got.
10/350 would really have been a better offer than he ended up getting, as his extension is only a hair over $30M AAV. He'd only have to make, what, $15M in the two years after your proposed deal to break even? I'd have to think that would get it done.

So we're really discussing (or ruing) the difference between a $30M AAV or $35M AAV.
 

DeadlySplitter

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he wasn't taking 10/350 pre-pandemic. he was asking for 12/420, reportedly.

the timing just wasn't there. the lack of good draft capital meant we couldn't pay him market value and still be competitive. this is the economics of baseball with this current CBA.

and yes, the difference between 30 AAV and 35 AAV on a luxury tax sheet is massive, unfortunately.
 

MikeM

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They are so desperate for a WS title that they just overpaid to keep Betts out of FA so his contract wouldn’t be an issue this year. You have to hand it to them—they are doing whatever it takes to win.
They already had him in house to make their immediate GFIN push, and given the surrounding circumstances I have my strong doubts this "doing whatever it takes" doesn't amount to them simply bidding against themselves here.

Good for him. But those "he started young so he still might get even better 6 years into his career!" hopes, the new shiny toy aspect, and the always present nostalgia fueled angle coming out of fanbase here until it no longer appears smart to feel that way typically only carries forward so far. My bet is this contract won't make it through year 2 or 3 tops before the accompanying overpay aspect that will then constantly be pointed out non stop in the media, especially in relationship to the Dodger's upcoming projected payroll situation, ends up shadowing over a lot of what he does on to do on the field as a player.
 
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There's a case to be made that it wasn't worth it when his immediate years would be on a team with no pitching, I suppose. But realistically, the Sox are going to end up paying a contract this big, and the odds are that it will be on a player who isn't as good as Mookie Betts.
I agree. And when it happens, I will be pissed all over again. If you have a young face of the franchise who is in the top 25 all-time in WAR for his age, you don't trade him. If you overpay to keep him, so what? I could give 2 shits about international slot money or losing draft picks. This is so fucking stupid.
 

LostinNJ

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So I take it this means there will be no professional bowling career for Mookie Betts. That's a shame.
 

Papelbon's Poutine

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So historical comps are useless, and we can just say short players age worse now?
I didn't say they're useless or that only short players age worse now. All players age worse now. That's not news. But look at your list.. The most recent guy you have on there that would suggest he'll be worth this deal in the second half of it is Joe Morgan (and yes, I see Knobluach but I have no idea why , his last season of putting up more than 1 WAR was at 30, yips or not.) Point being, when your strongest case retired in 1984 at age 40, you can't just ignore that circumstances are different and greenies most likely were a factor.
I don't even have a dog in this fight, I'm just saying I don't think either side has made any kind of compelling case. It seems arbitrary on the surface for Carolina to make the comment that "guys his height" don't age well, because there's nothing all that logical about what height has to do with anything in baseball outside of maybe pitching plane; I would almost say the contrary seems more logical, that short wiry guys would age more gracefully and maintain their effectiveness longer. But then your list of data points is pretty small, suggesting not many guys last that long that are short; not at all recent and not very encouraging. So who knows?

Tl;dr I think it's kind of a fools errand to try to make predictions like this on a player, but if you're going to, all factors need to be included. I don't think anyone would say "players over 35 don't seem to have their best seasons" and have the counter be Barry Bonds, while ignoring steroids.
 

edoug

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Only playing the Orioles 3 times every 3 years makes his odds of getting into the HOF more difficult.
 

Alcohol&Overcalls

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Worth and cost are two different things. The numbers you're citing are what a WAR costs on the FA market. Whether the player is "worth" that or not is a different discussion and not quite as objective. Do I personally believe he'll be worth $35M a year for the first half of that? Yes. For 10 years? No. I don't think any player in the game outside of Trout I'd be comfortable with saying that about.
Right, and he's FAR exceeded that $35mil/yr value through his career so far, even with our hand-wringing in this thread about defense or 'only' being a top-10 offensive player. If he continues to exceed $35 mil in value the first half of the contract, then the back half is likely still worth it, although there are certainly knock-on effects for roster construction as he declines.

What you're discussing is probably better defined as risk rather than value (or even worth or cost) - you don't believe the risk (especially those late-year knock-on effects for roster constructin) is one you're comfortable taking. That's a completely fair position, but I was responding to the initial assertion "he isn't worth 10/350" and it's pretty clear that, in the context of today's market, and using the present tense, that valuation is completely reasonable.
 

Mueller's Twin Grannies

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Only playing the Orioles 3 times every 3 years makes his odds of getting into the HOF more difficult.
Yes, but he gets to play the Padres 19 times. He also gets to play more games in Coors. And he'll face Miami more often. If anything, he might get there sooner.
 

Sam Ray Not

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On the other hand, he gets to hit in Coors Field 10 times every year.
Actually — nerd alert — Coors Field is to date his single worst venue for hitting: .311 career OPS in his whopping 10 plate appearances there.

The place he should really be looking forward to is Miller Park, where he will definitely keep up his career 2.188 OPS. ;-P

Setting aside the small-sample fun: he has actually been a bit better over his career against the Jays (.953) than against the O's (.933).
 

ShaneTrot

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It's going to be weird around 20 years from now when he is a first-ballot Hall of Famer and we will still be engaged in sophistry about this trade and payroll situation. The 2018 flag flies forever but Dombrowksi screwed the pooch here.
 

jon abbey

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It's going to be weird around 20 years from now when he is a first-ballot Hall of Famer and we will still be engaged in sophistry about this trade and payroll situation. The 2018 flag flies forever but Dombrowksi screwed the pooch here.
Something of a contrarian perspective and we will never know for sure, but there is a lot of assuming in this thread that if Mookie doesn't get traded and BOS has payroll space and offered him a $350M deal, that he signs with BOS. To me that's far from clear and even unlikely, Mookie can see as well as anyone how BOS currently looks long-term and I think it's really likely he would have signed elsewhere and BOS would have ended up with nothing but a compensation pick (a la NY and Cano). The Giants' beat writer on The Athletic wrote a sad piece yesterday about how SF had planned to go after Mookie hard this winter, and there's a good chance the new Mets owner would have too, especially if it ends up as Steve Cohen, and I'm sure there would have been other suitors.
 

ShaneTrot

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Something of a contrarian perspective and we will never know for sure, but there is a lot of assuming in this thread that if Mookie doesn't get traded and BOS has payroll space and offered him a $350M deal, that he signs with BOS. To me that's far from clear and even unlikely, Mookie can see as well as anyone how BOS currently looks long-term and I think it's really likely he would have signed elsewhere and BOS would have ended up with nothing but a compensation pick (a la NY and Cano). The Giants' beat writer on The Athletic wrote a sad piece yesterday about how SF had planned to go after Mookie hard this winter, and there's a good chance the new Mets owner would have too, especially if it ends up as Steve Cohen, and I'm sure there would have been other suitors.
What if the season crashes because of COVID, and clubs are hurting for money going forward? With all the uncertainty, I think Mookie was offered a market value deal and took it. He could have been looking at a lesser deal in the offseason.
 

jon abbey

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What if the season crashes because of COVID, and clubs are hurting for money going forward? With all the uncertainty, I think Mookie was offered a market value deal and took it. He could have been looking at a lesser deal in the offseason.
Or a bigger one with more teams allowed to bid on him, we'll never know.

But that wasn't my point, my point is that many posts here assume that BOS and/or DD somehow mismanaged this situation, and I am saying that IMO there is a sizable chance that Mookie was leaving no matter what.
 

SirPsychoSquints

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I didn't say they're useless or that only short players age worse now. All players age worse now. That's not news. But look at your list.. The most recent guy you have on there that would suggest he'll be worth this deal in the second half of it is Joe Morgan (and yes, I see Knobluach but I have no idea why , his last season of putting up more than 1 WAR was at 30, yips or not.) Point being, when your strongest case retired in 1984 at age 40, you can't just ignore that circumstances are different and greenies most likely were a factor.
I don't even have a dog in this fight, I'm just saying I don't think either side has made any kind of compelling case. It seems arbitrary on the surface for Carolina to make the comment that "guys his height" don't age well, because there's nothing all that logical about what height has to do with anything in baseball outside of maybe pitching plane; I would almost say the contrary seems more logical, that short wiry guys would age more gracefully and maintain their effectiveness longer. But then your list of data points is pretty small, suggesting not many guys last that long that are short; not at all recent and not very encouraging. So who knows?

Tl;dr I think it's kind of a fools errand to try to make predictions like this on a player, but if you're going to, all factors need to be included. I don't think anyone would say "players over 35 don't seem to have their best seasons" and have the counter be Barry Bonds, while ignoring steroids.
My main point was your bolded above, and so I pulled EVERY short guy who could be considered comparable - my point is that few short guys are great at ANY age, not that they drop off. I didn't pull only the anecdotes that supported my case - I pulled every short guy.
 

ShaneTrot

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Or a bigger one with more teams allowed to bid on him, we'll never know.

But that wasn't my point, my point is that many posts here assume that BOS and/or DD somehow mismanaged this situation, and I am saying that IMO there is a sizable chance that Mookie was leaving no matter what.
You may be right. His intention may have been never to sign here. We were always told he was going to test the market. I think the market is murky going forward, plus I believe owners are going to tighten up because they have an excuse to tighten up. So he took this deal. He may also really love the Dodgers and LA.
 

JokersWildJIMED

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You may be right. His intention may have been never to sign here. We were always told he was going to test the market. I think the market is murky going forward, plus I believe owners are going to tighten up because they have an excuse to tighten up. So he took this deal. He may also really love the Dodgers and LA.
Perhaps he does love LA, but he is building a HUGE house in middle TN...i happen to know the builder, so I'm not sure he is that tied to the area, at least not yet.
 

Papelbon's Poutine

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Meh...

It's not entirely outside what I would expect it to look like. He's 23 and still has baby fat. It could be a lot worse. I generally assume most baseball players aren't exactly impressive to behold if they take their shirt off and many probably resemble the Cleveland version of Eddie Harris. I remember this place going nuts over a picture of Beckett in spring training that showed a slight roll of belly fat on his follow through and everyone thought he was going to blow up. He certainly had injuries, but I'm drawing a blank on any that could have been attributed to him not having a six pack, other than when he was eating chicken.
 

Papelbon's Poutine

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My main point was your bolded above, and so I pulled EVERY short guy who could be considered comparable - my point is that few short guys are great at ANY age, not that they drop off. I didn't pull only the anecdotes that supported my case - I pulled every short guy.
Ah. Then my apologies, I missed that angle. I just think it's hard to comp to guys who were clearly in the PED era, even with greenies and like I said, players in general don't age as well anymore because of it.
 

Papelbon's Poutine

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I’d like to once again thank Dave Dombrowski for that fucking Chris Sale contract extension.

One of, if not the most, idiotic, insane signings in MLB history from the moment it was signed. Not even a 20/20 hindsight issue. Everyone knew it was a bad signing that made zero sense.
Wow, I think that's super hot takez. They signed a top five pitcher in baseball to an extremely reasonable AAV of about $25M for a reasonable term of 5 years. Look at what Gerrit Cole just got. If you want to yell at Dombrowski and blame him for this, Eovaldi and Price are a better place to start. Our rotation right now is basically what it would be had he not extended him and resigned Mookie instead; you wanna roll with ERod as your ace?

Also, it wasn't entirely him:

View: https://twitter.com/PeteAbe/status/1109138613072285696?s=20
 

shaggydog2000

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I'll root for Mookie actually being worth his contract, because he's just such a likable guy and plays with skill and joy. But looking at the history of those contracts, there are just too many things that can go wrong and often do.
 

Eck'sSneakyCheese

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I still hate this. We can all put our Belichickian Business caps on and say hes not going to live up to the contract or he's not worth money but goddammit he was ours. Came up through our system like a rocket and forced his way onto the team at whatever position they could throw at him. Played with passion. Was actually a great guy. Literally everything you want a franchise player to be. Especially in Boston. And we gave him away... Because of frickin money... Nope. Going to be a while until I get over this one.
 

JimD

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Lost in all the raw emotions and hot takes is the fact that the Red Sox largely went about this the right way in trying to lock up Mookie. As soon as he established himself as a rising star, by all accounts the front office made annual attempts at locking him up early at competitive money. It's not going to work every time as we saw with Mookie, but that is absolutely the approach I want to see this team take with its promising young stars.

Even with the Covid angle*, the fact that Mookie has barely spent any time in L.A. and still jumped on this deal tells me that he probably had little intention all along of returning to Boston.

* It's easy to suppose that Covid and the uncertainty in MLB going forward compelled Mookie to sign this deal, but he never had a problem with risk previously - he was always one pitch in on the hands or a crash into an outfield wall away from possibly seeing those $300-400 million contract dreams go away. He was going to be tremendously sought after this coming winter no matter what the 2020 'season' looks like. In my opinion, the Dodgers were one of a few teams (the Braves were likely another) that checked all of Mookie's boxes to be able to do a deal like this and keep him away from free agency.
 

sean1562

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maybe he just wanted a change of pace? It’s not like he is from Boston. Someone can love their job while working there but still want to move on after their contract is up. He doesn’t necessarily need to dislike the Boston area to want to move on to California.
 

OurF'ingCity

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Is there any evidence that Mookie would have turned down this exact same deal if the Sox offered it prior to trading him? If there isn’t, I don’t see how anyone can say that he wanted to leave Boston or didn’t plan on re-signing with them.

Ultimately, the Sox’ financial situation and Mookie’s contract expectations just didn’t align - it sucks, and the Sox made their own bed in that regard, but it happens. But I’ve seen nothing to suggest that Mookie wanted to move on from Boston in particular.
 

ShaneTrot

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I still hate this. We can all put our Belichickian Business caps on and say hes not going to live up to the contract or he's not worth money but goddammit he was ours. Came up through our system like a rocket and forced his way onto the team at whatever position they could throw at him. Played with passion. Was actually a great guy. Literally everything you want a franchise player to be. Especially in Boston. And we gave him away... Because of frickin money... Nope. Going to be a while until I get over this one.
My oldest kid was excited for baseball last night, we watched the MFY game and a couple of innings of the Dodgers' game. It was just so depressing with all the Mookie talk and the constant shots of Mookie smiling in the dugout that we turned the game off. Then my son had to bring up how weird it is going to be to see Brady in a Tampa uniform. 2020 really blows.

I know we root for laundry but I enjoyed the Mookie years. He could do it all and he did it with a smile on his face. As a prospect follower, his rise through the system was meteoric. I miss him.
 

Mueller's Twin Grannies

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Is there any evidence that Mookie would have turned down this exact same deal if the Sox offered it prior to trading him? If there isn’t, I don’t see how anyone can say that he wanted to leave Boston or didn’t plan on re-signing with them.

Ultimately, the Sox’ financial situation and Mookie’s contract expectations just didn’t align - it sucks, and the Sox made their own bed in that regard, but it happens. But I’ve seen nothing to suggest that Mookie wanted to move on from Boston in particular.
Impossible to know since they traded him about 8 months just before the pandemic hit. If we assume they don't trade him and the pandemic still hits, I think it comes down to whether he was all about trying free agency or whether he just wanted to be paid like one of the top players in the game. Everyone keeps saying he was committed to free agency, but I don't buy that since he and his agent made a counteroffer to the Red Sox when they made their 10/$300M (or whatever it was) pitch. If you're committed to going to free agency, you don't give a counteroffer unless it's so beyond ludicrous that it would be obvious as nothing more than just a ploy. Some might argue asking for $420 million over 10 years was one of those offers and maybe they're right, but the Red Sox should have split the different and offered him $360 million over 10 years (assuming they didn't do something like that) and see what the response would be. They made that offer, reportedly, knowing they were over the luxury tax even if he didn't ask for more, so clearly they were prepared to go over again if need be to keep him, but must have concluded that a gulf of 10 years of an extra $12 million AAV was a bridge too far and pivoted back to trying to get under the tax by dealing him away.

Either way, this belief that Mookie was going to free agency no matter what is, I still believe, a bit of a misnomer, as is the notion that the Red Sox were not willing to deviate from the plan of going under the tax threshold. Any way you slice it, regardless of who thought it was a good idea at the time, the Sale contract clearly was a limiting factor in future negotiations.

And even if it had ZERO bearing on the Mookie stuff (which is a specious theory, at best), it's still looking like one of the worst deals ever handed out since he hasn't even thrown a pitch since the extension officially started and we are already wondering/hoping he comes back as good or at least close to as good as he was before. It's been two calendar years, roughly, since his elbow issues first started flaring up and he's been Jekyll and Hyde, usually the latter, since striking out Machado to end the World Series. People are right to still kvetch about it in relation to this topic because, regardless of what is fact and what is supposition and what is outright falsehood, they will always be inextricably tied in the eyes of Sox fans.
 
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bosockboy

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Impossible to know since they traded him about 8 months before the pandemic hit. If we assume they don't trade him and the pandemic still hits, I think it comes down to whether he was all about trying free agency or whether he just wanted to be paid like one of the top players in the game. Everyone keeps saying he was committed to free agency, but I don't buy that since he and his agent made a counteroffer to the Red Sox when they made their 10/$300M (or whatever it was) pitch. If you're committed to going to free agency, you don't give a counteroffer unless it's so beyond ludicrous that it would be obvious as nothing more than just a ploy. Some might argue asking for $420 million over 10 years was one of those offers and maybe they're right, but the Red Sox should have split the different and offered him $360 million over 10 years (assuming they didn't do something like that) and see what the response would be. They made that offer, reportedly, knowing they were over the luxury tax even if he didn't ask for more, so clearly they were prepared to go over again if need be to keep him, but must have concluded that a gulf of 10 years of an extra $12 million AAV was a bridge too far and pivoted back to trying to get under the tax by dealing him away.

Either way, this belief that Mookie was going to free agency no matter what is, I still believe, a bit of a misnomer, as is the notion that the Red Sox were not willing to deviate from the plan of going under the tax threshold. Any way you slice it, regardless of who thought it was a good idea at the time, the Sale contract clearly was a limiting factor in future negotiations.

And even if it had ZERO bearing on the Mookie stuff (which is a specious theory, at best), it's still looking like one of the worst deals ever handed out since he hasn't even thrown a pitch since the extension officially started and we are already wondering/hoping he comes back as good or at least close to as good as he was before. It's been two calendar years, roughly, since his elbow issues first started flaring up and he's been Jekyll and Hyde, usually the latter, since striking out Machado to end the World Series. People are right to still kvetch about it in relation to this topic because, regardless of what is fact and what is supposition and what is outright falsehood, they will always be inextricably tied in the eyes of Sox fans.
Maybe 8 days not months.