Yeah because no massive, massive contract has ever come back to bite in the ass the team which offered the contract. Especially not, like, in Southern California. And teams which offer said contracts always go on to win lots of titles and stuff.
(None of the eight highest-paid players in baseball in 2013 made the postseason, and only six of the top 25 did. And that doesn't even include Albert Pujols, the most cautionary of tales, because the structure of his contract is so backloaded that he is not among the 25 highest-paid at the moment.)
Originally posted by DrDirtIf ever this kind of contract makes sense, it's here. I believe he's only 25. And he can win more games by himself than the Astros.
Tim Lincecum at 25 was a back to back Cy Young Award winner. Today, at age 29, he's a bum with no business in a Major League starting rotation. Alex Rodriguez was 24 when he signed his monster 10-year deal with Texas, but they finished last every year they had him and it wasn't until he was 33 that he won a World Series, though he was still an excellent player for most of that time. I agree that this looks better than, say, the Albert Pujols deal, but it's just impossible to say. Dodger fans shouldn't put that champagne on ice just yet.
Also, the Dodgers still play in the same league as the Cardinals, which puts a huge road block in any path to the World Series, but also makes their massive spending understandable, as they have to do something to give their fans false hope. :)
Usual caveat: I'd much rather see a player with this money than an owner.
In Kershaw's case, it's hard to argue that he doesn't deserve it, baseball salaries being what they are. Kershaw is clearly the best pitcher in the game and he's still in his prime. I don't think the Dodgers at all mind paying him a huge salary for his age 25-32 seasons, whereas the Angels paid Pujols for his 32-42 seasons when Albert was already on the downward slope.
"It breaks your heart. It is designed to break your heart. The game begins in the spring, when everything else begins again, and it blossoms in the summer, filling the afternoons and evenings, and then as soon as the chill rains come, it stops and leaves you to face the fall alone." --- Bart Giamatti, on baseball
I'm not saying this contract is guaranteed to blow up in the Dodgers' faces like the Pujols one is guaranteed to do to the Angels (if it hasn't already). What I am saying, though, is that out of the megacontracts handed out over the past 15 years dating back to Rodriguez's first absurd deal, there are way more that proved to be a waste* than ones that ended up worthwhile. The ten highest paid players in 2013 (from Wikipedia) were, in order: Alex Rodriguez (one World Series title), Cliff Lee (no World Series titles), Johan Santana (no World Series titles), Mark Teixeira (one World Series title), Prince Fielder (no World Series titles), Joe Mauer (no World Series titles), CC Sabathia (one World Series title), Tim Lincecum (two World Series titles), Zack Grienke (no World Series titles), and Vernon Wells (no World Series titles).
Many of these guys are of course young enough or early enough in their deals that it's too early to definitively write them off as busts, but only Grienke from that list plays on a team that made the postseason.
Lincecum is to me the most relevant comparison: At the same age, he was arguably just as dominant as Kershaw, and yet just a few years later he's a bullpen guy at best and has posted ERAs of 5.18 and 4.37 the past two seasons. Yeah, the Giants won a second World Series last year, but I think you'd be hard-pressed to argue that Lincecum was a big enough part of the reason why to justify his salary.
With this contract, I believe the Dodgers have five of the 25 highest-paid players in baseball (Crawford, Kemp, Gonzalez, Grienke and Kershaw). I'm not convinced spending and spending and spending is always the answer for a baseball team, but we can all have our own opinions. I just think there's no reason to assume this contract will mean much in a few years' time. It's at best a toss-up.
* - the definition of "waste" I'm going by is, the contract didn't make the teams that paid them out consistent World Series winners or anything similar.
Dodgers local tv deal brings them in approximately $300 million a year. Before a single dime comes in the door from attendance, national tv deals, MLB network, MLB online, merchandising, or anything else. Objectively compared to you and I the number is ludicrous. Given the Dodgers finances, it makes sense.
According to most saber-friendly people, the cost of a win above replacement is roughly $5 million. Last year Clayton Kershaw accounted for 6.5 WAR, so his value was basically $32.5 million. If you figure he's good for 6.1 WAR in 2014 (and ZIPS has him projected for 6.6 WAR), you can easily make the argument that Kershaw is properly paid. He might even be a slight bargain, considering his age and the inflation of the cost per win that will occur through the life of his contract.
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Revenge of the Sith = one thumb up from me. Fuck shit. I want to tittie fuck your ass. -- The Guinness. to Cerebus
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