Jon Heyman tweeted last week that Alfonso Soriano went from the most overpaid ball player to one of the most underrated players in the MLB. When Soriano signed his contract with the Cubs, it did look like a very bad contract. Back in 2007, ballplayers were not getting contracts that huge. So, Soriano’s 8 year/136 million deal in 2007 did look outrageous. But in my opinion, Soriano is having one his best seasons in his career and especially as a Cub. His average in in .260′s which isn’t too bad, he’s hitting home runs sill, driving in runs, being an anchor to the weak offense and playing great defense. Soriano can probably tell you that his defense has approved a lot thanks to Dale Sveum and the coaching staff.
Now, Soriano is the 17th highest player in the MLB. Since 2007, many players have passed Soriano in money and Soriano is still making 19 million per year. I wanted Soriano to be traded for a few years now, but if the Cubs can’t trade him and don’t get a good offer, I’m fine with him staying on the north side.
Going into this season … the highest paid players in the MLB:
1) Alex Rodriguez
2) Albert Pujols
3) Vernon Wells
4) Johan Santana
5) Mark Teixeira
6) CC Sabathia
7) Joe Mauer
8) Prince Fielder
9) Adrian Gonzalez
10) Cliff Lee
Of those players, 2 have injury concerns. Rodriguez can’t stay on the field and is currently on the DL right now. Santana had Tommy John Surgery and came back strong this year, but fell off the face of the earth. The New York Mets then decided to shut him down for the rest of the season.
The Los Angeles Angels were trying to trade Wells before the non-waiver trade deadline and when that failed, they tryed to trade him during the waiver deadline and then that failed too. However, the Angels did not give Wells that contract, the Toronto Blue Jays did.
The Red Sox decided to trade Adrian Gonzalez during this year’s waiver deadline to the Los Angeles Dodgers. They are going in a different direction and don’t want to lay that ridiculously amount of money to Gonzalez.
There was a chance Lee was going to be traded in the waiver deadline, but the Philadelphia Philles decided to retain him. Over 100 pitchers this year, recorded a win before Lee did. For a pitcher making that kind of money, that can not happen. If I was the Phillies, I would have let a team take his contract for almost nothing … cough Dodgers cough.
An off-season of overpaid 1B … Fielder and Pujols joined the list. Pujols is a great hitter and probably a future Hall of Famer, but not worth close to 30 million a year. By the time his contract is up, he’ll be in his 40′s. So, you’re playing him for his worse years of his career. Fielder was signed to a cheaper contract, but not a good investment. He’ll end up as a DH eventually and mid 20′s million is a lot for a DH. Of whom only takes at-bats in a game and not much more. Also, don’t forget … Fielder and Pujols contracts are back-loaded and there money will go up by year.
Out of that list, Teixeria and Mauer seem like the better fits. They’re good ballplayers, but don’t get me wrong, they’re still overpaid. I still wouldn’t have signed them to those contracts, but if you want to win, you have too as teams will pay them what they want.
The MLB is not like the NFL, all the money given to the player is guranteed. So, if you lose a player to injury, you’re paying the player his whole contract to sit on the bench. That’s why the MLB may have to eventually change to the NFL way, so owners are not screwed out of money. If that change does happen, it won’t be awhile… instant replay is number 1 on Bud Selig’s agenda.
I keep mentioning this statement in a lot of my posts, but it’s the best line I heard in a long time: So, teams are paying players a lot of money for their worse seasons of their career. As the players make more money a year in the later seasons of their career. By that, the players are aging and their stats are falling. Thanks to Cubs General Manager Jed Hoyer for that statement.
All in all, I’m saying most players in the league are overpaid now a days. It’s just how the MLB is now and we can’t do anything about it. Unless a salary cap is inserted, but I don’t see that hapening (for years … at least!).
Alfonso Soriano is not as overpaid anymore as many may think!