Jayson Werth signed for 7 years and $126 million while Carl Crawford signed for 7 years and $142 million. At the time both contracts raised eye brows, and a little over 9 months later are drawing more intense criticism. Each contract can be argued as a little worse than the other, but here’s the argument for both.
Why Werth’s Contract Was Worse: Werth’s deal was signed before Crawford by four days. It essentially set the market for Crawford much higher when it might not have needed to. The Phillies, perhaps the biggest obstacle in the way of the Nationals signing him, would go on to sign Cliff Lee almost a week later and probably would have never been able to afford him. Then there is the pure numbers argument. Based purely on the dollars, Werth became the 15th highest paid player in baseball. From a fantasy standpoint, he was ranked 19th last year – and that was his 30-year-old season in which he had a contract to play for. There’s usually only one way to go from that point forward. He makes $18 million annually.
Why Crawford’s Contract Was Worse: Crawford is making $20.3 million per season – the 10th highest annual contract in baseball. The problem with this is that the guys that are being paid more with the exception of Alex Rodriguez are all performing at very high standards this year. Like Werth, there’s no way you can argue Crawford is a top ten player right now. He might not even be a top ten most valuable player on his own team. Nobody would argue that Crawford was the more consistent player before the contracts were signed, but there was definitely skepticism about how well Crawford would handle playing in a larger market under the scrutiny of a big contract. There is no evidence to suggest that he has made a transition. Statistically, Crawford has less home runs, a lower OPS, less RBI, less runs, and less games played than Werth. Nothing is more concerning than his 77% success rate and 17 steals. Crawford’s fantasy and real baseball life has been made via swiping bases. He turned 30 earlier this month, so we have to wonder if he’ll ever get back to the level of player he was in Tampa Bay.
- Carlos Carassco still feels pain in his right shoulder, so he might not be ready to come off the DL as early as anticipated.
- The Giants activated Sergio Romo today and could be using him as an option in the 9th inning with Brian Wilson still on the shelf.
- Another option for saves is Jason Motte who got his first save today. Tony La Russsa claims that his closers will be chosen based on merit from this point forward. Motte was deserving of this opportunity two months ago.
- Thanks to Hurricane Irene, the Braves have shuffled their rotation to have Jair Jurrjens on seven days rest Tuesday, Derek Lowe on six days rest on Wedneday, and Tim Hudson on normal rest on Thursday.
- The Mets remain on track to play their doubleheader tomorrow against the Marlins.
- Ryan Zimmerman got the day off today just to get a breather with the Nationals also having a normal day off tomorrow. Zimmerman is fine, but Davey Johnson wanted to give him time after Zimmerman had played in every game since returning from the DL two months ago.
- Aaron Harang is 8-0 with a 2.07 ERA when he doesn’t allow a home run this season. He is 4-4 with a 6.71 ERA when he does allow a home run. If I’m doing the math correctly that means Aaron Harang is 12-4 this season. Who knew?
- Nelson Cruz was placed back in the 5th spot of the Rangers order after going 7 for 9 while hitting 7th.
- David Price on setting a team record for striking out 14 hitters in one game. If there were two wild card spots, the Rays would be as dangerous a threat to get to the World Series as any American League team.
- Orioles manager and fromer Yankees manager Buck Showalter said the Yankees were disrespectful to Mike Flanagan in their complaints about how the schedule was handled.
- Scott Rolen is close to returning for the Reds.
- Dayan Viciedo homered in his long-awaited debut with the White Sox this season. He also singled in his first at-bat.
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