ESPN’s Buster Olney recently had an interesting chart up where he looked at the value that clubs received on the largest contracts that have even been issued. Here’s the list:
Dollars spent per win above replacement in completed $100 million contracts, through 2011:
|Ken Griffey, Jr||9-year/$116.5M||11.7||$9.96M|
This list represents deals that have expired. But that made me start wondering about the contracts that have been signed more recently and are still ongoing. We obviously can’t take a final tally, but we can look at how things stand as of today. On the heels of the Yu Darvish hoopla I’m going to include Diasuke Matsuzaka in this chart, since the total outlay to acquire him exceeded 100M. With that out of the way, here’s the list of current $100M+ players.
(Note-WAR is via Fangraphs, contracts from Cots)
|Miguel Cabrera||(8-year/152M) $66.3M||21.7||$3.05M|
|CC Sabathia||(7 year/$161M) $60M||18.7||$3.21M|
|Mark Teixeira||(8-year/$180M) $62.5M||12.6||$4.96M|
|Alfonso Soriano||(8-year/$136M) $82M||15.5||$5.29M|
|Alex Rodriguez||(10-year/$275M) $122M||18.6||$6.55M|
|Johan Santana||(6-year/$137.5M) $82.5M||10.9||$7.57M|
|Diasuke Matsuzaka||(5-year/$101.1M) $101.1M||10.6||$9.53M|
|Vernon Wells||(7-year/$126M) $63M||5.6||$11.25M|
|Barry Zito||(7-year/119M) $80M||6.6||$12.12M|
|Joe Mauer||(8-year/$184M) $23M||1.8||$12.77M|
As you can see, very few of these contracts have yielded good value. It’s far too soon to draw any conclusions on some of them, with the Joe Mauer deal at the head of that list. But its safe to say that once you get into 9 figures, almost everything has to go right in order for the team to get good value. It’s also safe to say that many of these deals will only look worse as they proceed, with Soriano, Wells and A-Rod aging and Santana attempting to return from major shoulder surgery.
The Yanks have been relatively quiet this offseason, but I think these charts show pretty clearly that just because you spend a ton of money, that doesn’t mean you are necessarily getting production in return. More often than not, you don’t.
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