Friday, December 3, 2010

Quick(ish) Thoughts

Autographed Mo card
that I traded for. Sick brag.
Mariano Rivera and the Yankees have reached an agreement yesterday, 2 years $30M.  Apparently there was a second (or third) team involved that was offering Rivera a 3rd year and/or more money but I find this pretty hard to believe.  The first words that we heard out of Rivera's camp (or by a random "source" close it it) in the beginning of the offseason were that Rivera wanted 2 years at ~$18M per.  If that's the case it would seem odd that (a) another team would care to offer a third year and (b) that he would end up signing with the Yankees for less than he initially wanted while he had leverage from another team.

That's kind of all besides the point because we all knew Rivera was going to be paid handsomely and remain on the Yankees, no brainer.  Mo at 41 is about as sure of a thing as one can be at that age, safe to say it's a good signing for the Yankees weird as that sounds paying a reliever at that age $15M.

In other free agent signing news, Adam Dunn signed a 4 year deal worth $56M with the Chicago White Sox.  This is Dunn's first time playing in the AL, and whether or not the Sox keep Konerko (I think they will) Dunn shouldn't see the field and will likely DH.  The White Sox were killed last year by their DH spot, handing the job to Mark Kotsay and co. and letting Jim Thome walk so that clearly won't be an issue for next season.  If the White Sox believe that Dunn is the piece that can get them into the postseason than this will be money well spent.

Dunn playing small ball...and failing
At least for the first couple of  years. Players like Dunn, those with "old man skills" who hit a lot of homers while striking out and walking a lot with no real defensive value don't necessarily age that well.  Dunn, it should be noted, has been a pillar of consistency, both in production and health over the course of his career.  However, for what it's worth, Dunn's similarity scores bring up the names Richie Sexson, Jay Buhner, Jeremy Burnitz, Pat Burrell and Troy Glaus.  Jay Buhner's last effective year was at age 32, Sexson at 31, Glaus 31, Burrell 31 and Burnitz at 35 thanks to the Coors Field Effect.  See the theme here?

If Dunn's production slips a little with age, or if the AL is a little too tough on him, this contract could become an albatross, and rather fast too.  Of course, Dunn has played in an average of 158 games while hitting 40 homers over the last 7 years so if he keeps doing that we shouldn't be surprised either.  My bet: Adam Dunn has a typical Adam Dunn type year in 2011 helping the White Sox with everyone applauding the move, only to find those same people talk about how bad of a contract it seems in 2014.

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