Worst free agent shortstop contract of the 2020's (so far)

Message Bookmarked
Bookmark Removed

Has this gotten out of hand?

Poll Results

Francisco Lindor (10 Y/$341 M) 1
Xander Bogaerts (11 Y/$280 M) 1
Corey Seager (10 Y/$325 M) 0
Trea Turner (11 Y/$300 M) 0
Carlos Correa (13 Y/$350 M) 0
Dansby Swanson (7 Y/$177 M) 0

NoTimeBeforeTime, Sunday, 18 December 2022 11:38 (one month ago) link

Will have to do some comparisons to answer the question asked, but, believe it or not, I'll go with Correa's as the best. He's the best player, and the one I could see winning two or three MVPs in the next few years. If he were to do that--if--and especially if there's a WS title in there for the Giants, that'd go a long way towards justifying his contract right there. If, if, if.

The worst? I need an algorithm.

clemenza, Sunday, 18 December 2022 13:39 (one month ago) link

Correa also seems like he might be a bit of a jerk, so the algorithm has to factor in that.

clemenza, Sunday, 18 December 2022 13:42 (one month ago) link

Until I compiled this list, I had forgotten that Lindor's contract has the highest AAV -- and he signed last year (what would he have gotten if he was a FA in this year's market)? He may have been the best player heading into his free agent years, and was only 27. But he's been with the Mets for two years and seems to have hit his ceiling, even though he's still a very good player.

NoTimeBeforeTime, Sunday, 18 December 2022 14:20 (one month ago) link

Was going to say the same thing: that he was Top 10 in MVP voting last year, but that yeah, it looks like last year might be his ceiling, and four years ago I thought his ceiling would be more impressive. (Major points in the not-a-jerk category, though.)

clemenza, Sunday, 18 December 2022 19:04 (one month ago) link

would suggest that marcus semien (7 Y, $175 M) also belongs on this list -- he'd be playing short for texas had it not then subsequently signed seager

also trevor story (6 Y, $140 M) as he will presumably be moving back to short in bogaerts' absence

mookieproof, Sunday, 18 December 2022 20:14 (one month ago) link

(story would seem to have the least upside, but he's also making the least money, so)

mookieproof, Sunday, 18 December 2022 20:17 (one month ago) link

Yes, Story should have been on the list, he was exclusively a shortstop when he signed. Semien signed after a career year playing second base, but you're right, he played only shortstop before that. And Semien had those awful first two months this year before turning it around, that's scary when you've signed a guy for seven years. But it's not as scary as a 10-plus year contract that runs into that player's 40's!

NoTimeBeforeTime, Sunday, 18 December 2022 23:31 (one month ago) link

I should have added Javier Baez to the poll too.

NoTimeBeforeTime, Wednesday, 21 December 2022 08:38 (one month ago) link

New information has come to light! (This Correa situation was unexpected)

FRAUDULENT STEAKS (The Cursed Return of the Dastardly Thermo Thinwall), Wednesday, 21 December 2022 14:47 (one month ago) link

Shortest free agent shortstop contract of the 2020's (so far)

Guayaquil (eephus!), Wednesday, 21 December 2022 16:26 (one month ago) link

And therefore the best!

FRAUDULENT STEAKS (The Cursed Return of the Dastardly Thermo Thinwall), Wednesday, 21 December 2022 23:19 (one month ago) link

Lindor, Turner, Seager, and Correa are kind of interesting to compare because they all debuted in 2015 and they're around the same age. 2023 will be Turner's age 30 season, Seager and Lindor will be 29, and 28 for Correa. (if you're a turner or seager fan you might note that both of them barely played in 2015, while Lindor and Turner both played 99 games in their 2015 rookie seasons)

Lindor towers above the others in career fWAR, with 42. Turner and Correa are both at 31, Seager with 26. but so much of that difference comes down to how much more Lindor has been on the field compared to the others. but even accounting for that, Lindor has outproduced the others on a per game basis:

Lindor: 1063 games, 4740 PAs, 42.0 fWAR (.040 fWAR/game)
Turner: 849 games, 3737 PAs, 31.6 fWAR (.037 fWAR/game)
Correa: 888 games, 3813 PAs, 31.3 fWAR (.035 fWAR/game)
Seager: 787 games, 3373 PAs, 26.2 fWAR (.033 fWAR/game)

while i think players that were injury-prone in their 20s are probably more likely to be injury prone in their 30s, on average, i know it's a crapshoot when you're talking about individual players. maybe Seager will be healthy in his 30s while Lindor, well, i don't want to accidentally jinx someone. but who knows what terrible fates will befall us in the next ten years awooooooooooooo 🐺

Karl Malone, Thursday, 22 December 2022 00:18 (one month ago) link

Correa's quite a bit higher than Lindor in bWAR/162 games, 7.2 vs. 5.6.

clemenza, Thursday, 22 December 2022 01:34 (one month ago) link

Automatic thread bump. This poll is closing tomorrow.

System, Friday, 23 December 2022 00:01 (one month ago) link

baez seems like it will be the worst. fangraphs had last year as seager’s best season since 2017 but it’s heavily based on defense which means it could be way off... it’s not like he’s known for defense. i wouldn’t wanna be holding the bill on that contract in 4-5 years let alone 10.

turner hits for average, power, runs, plays defense, is a true 5 tool player. he’s my favorite of this group. the medical stuff is concerning on correa but he’s a few years younger than these guys and the metrics say he’s a plus defender. w/ bogaerts… you never know with players in their 30s but he’s been very durable so far and hitting/walking feel like sustainable skills to me. we’ve already seen what it will look like for lindor when it’s bad and it’s kinda scary. a small guy who relies on power doesn’t feel like a great longterm bet but he showed last year he (prob) still has some great seasons left in him. seager, swanson, semien and of course baez are the ones that would really worry me. i think i’d rather have the seager deal of all those but he’s got a bad back and man that’s a lot of money

J0rdan S., Friday, 23 December 2022 02:22 (one month ago) link

I agree that Turner is the best of the group, he's a complete player now and his bat will play even as he declines. Correa is fantastic when he's on the field. Baez is probably the best answer but I forgot to add him, so I voted for Bogaerts. It really seems like he peaked three years ago and the contract runs throughout his 30's.

NoTimeBeforeTime, Friday, 23 December 2022 06:09 (one month ago) link

seems like bogaerts’ 2019 was one of the standout juiced ball seasons — he hasn’t really displayed that kind of power before or since. but relative to the league he’s regressed very little (OPS+ still around 130). still gets on base, hits a bunch of doubles (although that may be fenway-aided), good fielder, seems durable, not a head case.

i mean yeah every contract that includes a player’s age 40 season is gonna get ugly, but i think it’ll be a while before he sinks to baez’s *current* value

mookieproof, Friday, 23 December 2022 13:12 (one month ago) link

Automatic thread bump. This poll's results are now in.

System, Saturday, 24 December 2022 00:01 (one month ago) link

Well then

FRAUDULENT STEAKS (The Cursed Return of the Dastardly Thermo Thinwall), Saturday, 24 December 2022 04:44 (one month ago) link

You've probably seen this already by now:

Billy, this is Carlos Correa, he is one of the best shortstops in all of baseball.
His only defect is that every team freaks out when they see his medicals. I believe, if we wait long enough, the A's can sign him for $237,000. pic.twitter.com/LxxbSw96nb

— Baseball Brit (@BaseballBrit) December 24, 2022

clemenza, Tuesday, 27 December 2022 17:27 (one month ago) link

Lol. What happens next with this dude?! Mets pumps the breaks and Carlos / boras are saying they won’t renegotiate the contract… do they blink? Do the Mets blink? Do the rangers say “fuck it” and sign him for a year and $35 M less? is he destined for some contractual no mans land where he’s only able to land one year deals for the rest of his career?

FRAUDULENT STEAKS (The Cursed Return of the Dastardly Thermo Thinwall), Wednesday, 28 December 2022 05:36 (one month ago) link

I think the Rangers could use a third $30M/yr shortstop.

NoTimeBeforeTime, Wednesday, 28 December 2022 06:59 (one month ago) link

You must be logged in to post. Please either login here, or if you are not registered, you may register here.