PDA

View Full Version : 126 million dollar mistake?



KoryMac5
04-01-2008, 03:09 PM
Zito's contract has to be one of the worst in baseball ever, before Milton, Pavano and Hampton.


For Zito and the Giants, the worrisome numbers were not the ones on the scoreboard. They were the ones on the radar gun.

The Giants signed him 13 months ago, and his fastball still hasn't shown up. He topped out at 84 mph on Monday.

Maybe his velocity comes back, maybe not. He cannot be sure. No one can. He spoke gently, with more hope than confidence in his voice.

"I want to get that 88, 89, 90 back," he said. "I'm sure it's just a small tweak away."

Zito at 84 is not Jason Schmidt at 84, a power pitcher stripped of his primary weapon. Zito never operated at 95. He lives on off-speed stuff. However, if his fastball is not much faster than his curve or change, a batter can guess off-speed pitch and still adjust to a fastball. Hit it, or foul it off and drive up the pitch count.

Zito struck out one, looking. Of his first 60 pitches, the Dodgers swung and missed at one. In five innings, he threw 87 pitches.

I just have to believe that something must be wrong with his shoulder or his delivery. Zito was never a power pitcher but he could at least hit 90. His contract brings up an interesting question, is this the worst contract in baseball history?

redsmetz
04-01-2008, 03:11 PM
Zito's contract has to be one of the worst in baseball ever, before Milton, Pavano and Hampton.

I just have to believe that something must be wrong with his shoulder or his delivery. Zito was never a power pitcher but he could at least hit 90. His contract brings up an interesting question, is this the worst contract in baseball history?

Boy, that's a tough call. Kevin Brown's was pretty awful.

RedsManRick
04-01-2008, 03:12 PM
How nice does this make you feel about Harang and Arroyo?

WMR
04-01-2008, 03:13 PM
Chan Ho Park's, adjusted for inflation, is still up there, I'd imagine?

MWM
04-01-2008, 03:14 PM
Albert Belle
Kevin Brown
Darren Dreifort

Some other bad ones.

redsfan30
04-01-2008, 03:16 PM
I remember there being talk last year when he showed up to Giants camp that he was tweaking with his motion/delivery and the resulting talk was just how assanine that really is. Messing with a delivery that just got you 7 years and $126 million?

Come on.

westofyou
04-01-2008, 03:17 PM
Wayne Garland, Mark Davis, Mike Hampton... this one is worse.

PuffyPig
04-01-2008, 03:21 PM
Boy, that's a tough call. Kevin Brown's was pretty awful.


The Dodgers got some pretty good years out of brown..

The Giants might get nothing out of Zito.

The really bad thing is, Zito looked pretty bad going into last year. He loked like on the verge of some reaaly bad seasons to come. Why anyone paid him that kind of money is insane.

fearofpopvol1
04-01-2008, 03:25 PM
I really root for Zito. I met him a few years ago and he was the nicest, most humble guy ever. You just hate to see something like that happen to a good guy.

redsmetz
04-01-2008, 03:27 PM
The Dodgers got some pretty good years out of brown..

The Giants might get nothing out of Zito.

The really bad thing is, Zito looked pretty bad going into last year. He loked like on the verge of some reaaly bad seasons to come. Why anyone paid him that kind of money is insane.

I'm not sure at $105 Million ten years ago overrides they didn't get as much as they had hoped for; but I'll grant it's arguable.

RedsManRick
04-01-2008, 03:27 PM
I really root for Zito. I met him a few years ago and he was the nicest, most humble guy ever. You just hate to see something like that happen to a good guy.

He does still get to collect his checks you realize. I could think of worse things to have happen.

BCubb2003
04-01-2008, 03:46 PM
Carl Pavano?

I wonder what the worst contract was from a player's point of view?

fearofpopvol1
04-01-2008, 04:09 PM
He does still get to collect his checks you realize. I could think of worse things to have happen.

I totally understand that. I just root for him to perform well. While a huge contract like his certainly softens that blow, I don't think he wants to suck or anything.

redsmetz
04-01-2008, 04:13 PM
Carl Pavano?

I wonder what the worst contract was from a player's point of view?

I'm guessing any contract which had the Reserve Clause in it. I can't find the names, but I know there was some player or other (and probably more) who had a terrific year and was offered a pay cut the following year.

westofyou
04-01-2008, 04:20 PM
I wonder what the worst contract was from a player's point of view?

Ones signed in 1891, after the failed Players League, many a player had to eat crow along with losing a sizable investment from the failed league. Plus the whole thing killed the AA too and shrunk the pool of "MLB" to a less stellar number in the matter of 2 years.

PuffyPig
04-01-2008, 05:03 PM
While a huge contract like his certainly softens that blow.......

That's the understatement of the year.

bucksfan2
04-01-2008, 05:04 PM
I'm guessing any contract which had the Reserve Clause in it. I can't find the names, but I know there was some player or other (and probably more) who had a terrific year and was offered a pay cut the following year.

I dont know if this is similar but I remember after Josh Beckett was MVP of the World Series he had to take a pay cut because of the contract he signed. I remember something along that lines, can anyone refresh me?

UKFlounder
04-01-2008, 05:07 PM
I dont know if this is similar but I remember after Josh Beckett was MVP of the World Series he had to take a pay cut because of the contract he signed. I remember something along that lines, can anyone refresh me?

How about Wily Mo Pena's deal that would not allow the Reds to send him to AAA? He couldn't even re-negotiate it? :D

Patrick Bateman
04-01-2008, 05:11 PM
Albert Belle
Kevin Brown
Darren Dreifort

Some other bad ones.

Dreifort's was pretty terrible. Only a waste of 50M opposed to 100M+, but that was a contract that everyone knew had zero chance of working out.

He was never a particularly good pitcher before the contract, always had health issues. It was 50M on perceived potential.

For those reasons, that would be my vote. They flushed the 50M down the toilet the moment the contract was signed.

Patrick Bateman
04-01-2008, 05:13 PM
Another one was Bobby Higgonson. Bad, bad contract.

RedsManRick
04-01-2008, 05:14 PM
How about Wily Mo Pena's deal that would not allow the Reds to send him to AAA? He couldn't even re-negotiate it? :D

That's thanks to the Player's Association...

redsmetz
04-01-2008, 05:30 PM
That's thanks to the Player's Association...

It's the Player's Associations fault that there's a collective bargaining agreement that spells out how major league contracts work and options work, etc.? I believe both owners and the union signed that contract and it was Wily Mo and his agent who entered into the contract with the Yankees. That it worked to his detriment doesn't fall on to the shoulders of the union - there was lots of blame to go around. Frankly, if it were permitted to renegotiate it (which would be impossible - you can't put toothpaste back in the tube), we never would have sniffed him on our team.

jmcclain19
04-01-2008, 05:58 PM
People post this stuff about Zito every April, and every year I have to post something similiar. He sucks in April. We get it.

Zito Career in April - 229.2IP, 4.86ERA, 1.38WHIP
Zito Career May thru Sept - 1397.1IP, 3.47ERA, 1.24WHIP

KoryMac5
04-01-2008, 06:16 PM
People post this stuff about Zito every April, and every year I have to post something similiar. He sucks in April. We get it.

Zito Career in April - 229.2IP, 4.86ERA, 1.38WHIP
Zito Career May thru Sept - 1397.1IP, 3.47ERA, 1.24WHIP

I think the flaw in that argument is looking at his career numbers. The point of the thread is to look at his contract and how he has performed since signing it.

2007 ERA month by month:

April 3.73
May 4.62
June 5.60
July 7.82
Aug 2.50
Sept 4.25

It looks like he got roughed up pretty good in May, June, and July. With his velocity down to 84mph I think we will see more of the same.

Jay Bruce
04-01-2008, 06:35 PM
Juan Pierre at 9 million a year for 5 years is also a pretty bad contract. It is especially bad when you consider that he is starting the season on the bench entering year 2 of the deal.

cincrazy
04-01-2008, 08:05 PM
How about the Rockies signing Mike Hampton AND Denny Neagle to be their 1-2 punch early this decade? OUCH...

KronoRed
04-01-2008, 08:59 PM
Juan Pierre at 9 million a year for 5 years is also a pretty bad contract. It is especially bad when you consider that he is starting the season on the bench entering year 2 of the deal.

I'd give that deal the award, he's basically a pinch runner.

redsrule2500
04-01-2008, 09:48 PM
Wow, I remember wanting the reds to sign zito lol.....

jmcclain19
04-01-2008, 10:55 PM
I think the flaw in that argument is looking at his career numbers. The point of the thread is to look at his contract and how he has performed since signing it.

2007 ERA month by month:

April 3.73
May 4.62
June 5.60
July 7.82
Aug 2.50
Sept 4.25

It looks like he got roughed up pretty good in May, June, and July. With his velocity down to 84mph I think we will see more of the same.

He certainly wasn't ace quality last year - no doubt about that.

But to consider his contract worse than the likes of contracts signed by Darren Driefort, Chan Ho Park, Mo Vaughn or Mike Hampton is a huge stretch. Especially in year two of the deal.

Dom Heffner
04-01-2008, 10:58 PM
Zito missed something like 4 bats the other night. 4.

It's over.

blumj
04-01-2008, 11:11 PM
But he's never missed many bats, and he's never thrown much harder than 85-88, and he's usually kind of stunk early in the season. Sure, it's an ace-level contract and he certainly isn't giving them ace-level production, but he's been taking the ball every 5th day and going 200-ish innings since forever and he hasn't stopped doing that yet. If I'm going to be stuck with a big, expensive mistake, I'll take the kind where the guy's still giving me that over spending most of it on the DL.

PuffyPig
04-01-2008, 11:13 PM
People post this stuff about Zito every April, and every year I have to post something similiar. He sucks in April. We get it.

Zito Career in April - 229.2IP, 4.86ERA, 1.38WHIP
Zito Career May thru Sept - 1397.1IP, 3.47ERA, 1.24WHIP

I'd be surprised if Zito can get a 4.86 ERA for the entire year.

Caveat Emperor
04-01-2008, 11:19 PM
Mo Vaughn -- 6 years, $80 million w/ Anaheim.

He played 3 years and 27 games of a fourth. Only two of those was actually with the Angels. In neither season did he come close to his .400+ OBP that he'd had with the Red Sox.

Not the worst contract, but certainly worth mentioning as awful.

klw
04-01-2008, 11:27 PM
Wayne Garland- the first free agent bust

15fan
04-01-2008, 11:30 PM
Andy Ashby w/ the Dodgers and Juan Guzman with the DRays get at least an honorable mention.

As far as the worst contract from the players perspective, I'll submit...Matt Harrington and the contract after contract that he walked away from.

WMR
04-01-2008, 11:31 PM
What about the Juan Gonzalez contract? I don't remember the particulars of his huge deal and how many good years he had while playing for it?

Reds Nd2
04-01-2008, 11:49 PM
As far as the worst contract from the players perspective, I'll submit...Matt Harrington and the contract after contract that he walked away from.

Isn't he the guy who has Scott Boras for an agent and is currently playing Indy ball?

4256 Hits
04-01-2008, 11:58 PM
If I was a GM there is no way I give a pitcher over a 3 year contract. There is just way to much risk that they could blow their arm out and get little in return.

As for bad contract how about any the Jaun Castro signed.

Johnny Footstool
04-02-2008, 01:04 AM
Pavano's contrace was worse.

Zito just needs a decent pitching coach.

blumj
04-02-2008, 09:50 AM
Tim Wakefield's contract is pretty bad from a player's perspective, in the sense that it gives the team total control. It's recurring team options at $4M a year, with some bonus money for the number of starts he makes. Whenever the team picks up the option, another option adds on automatically, but it just ends whenever they decide not to pick up the option.

Johnny Footstool
04-02-2008, 10:08 AM
nm

redsmetz
04-02-2008, 10:27 AM
Tim Wakefield's contract is pretty bad from a player's perspective, in the sense that it gives the team total control. It's recurring team options at $4M a year, with some bonus money for the number of starts he makes. Whenever the team picks up the option, another option adds on automatically, but it just ends whenever they decide not to pick up the option.

With all due respect, you're joking, right? That's called lifetime employment, plus he gets a buyout when it's all over. The guy's 41 and still playing baseball for $4M a year - I think we'd see a long line from people who'd happily sign that contract.

BCubb2003
04-02-2008, 10:37 AM
With all due respect, you're joking, right? That's called lifetime employment, plus he gets a buyout when it's all over. The guy's 41 and still playing baseball for $4M a year - I think we'd see a long line from people who'd happily sign that contract.

Well, there's people and there's ballplayers. It does sound a little like an NFL contract, which is only a contract for the player.

blumj
04-02-2008, 10:57 AM
With all due respect, you're joking, right? That's called lifetime employment, plus he gets a buyout when it's all over. The guy's 41 and still playing baseball for $4M a year - I think we'd see a long line from people who'd happily sign that contract.
No, I'm not joking, because it's the concept of that contract that's so horrible from a player's perspective.

IslandRed
04-02-2008, 11:12 AM
No, I'm not joking, because it's the concept of that contract that's so horrible from a player's perspective.

From the typical player's perspective, I imagine so.

But Wakefield wouldn't have signed it if it didn't meet his needs. He has no desire to pitch anywhere other than Boston but he's too old to merit a multi-year guaranteed deal, so what to do? Sure, he could fight the annual battle over re-upping for another year or being non-tendered or going to arbitration, trying to extract maximum dollars for the next year. But he chose, instead, to sign a contract that made it as easy as possible for Boston to keep bringing him back -- at a salary that's about as much as he'd get anyway, since he's not going to morph into a much better pitcher at his age.

UKFlounder
04-02-2008, 11:18 AM
If he pitches horribly, perhaps him being durable hurts more than helps. For instance, Eric Milton on the DL making big money seemed to hurt the Reds less than when he actually pitched so poorly for the same money.

Of course, it all depends on the replacement and how good he is, but if a player has truly "lost it" (or never had it) then having him on the DL may not be worse than having him perform horribly game after game

redsmetz
04-02-2008, 12:11 PM
From the typical player's perspective, I imagine so.

But Wakefield wouldn't have signed it if it didn't meet his needs. He has no desire to pitch anywhere other than Boston but he's too old to merit a multi-year guaranteed deal, so what to do? Sure, he could fight the annual battle over re-upping for another year or being non-tendered or going to arbitration, trying to extract maximum dollars for the next year. But he chose, instead, to sign a contract that made it as easy as possible for Boston to keep bringing him back -- at a salary that's about as much as he'd get anyway, since he's not going to morph into a much better pitcher at his age.

Exactly!

klw
04-04-2008, 11:08 AM
http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=3328362
Hampton back to DL

fearofpopvol1
04-04-2008, 05:46 PM
What about Carlos Beltran's contract? I mean, it's not as bad (thus far) as the Zito contract, but that was a lot of coin for someone who has definitely underperformed.

Patrick Bateman
04-04-2008, 05:54 PM
What about Carlos Beltran's contract? I mean, it's not as bad (thus far) as the Zito contract, but that was a lot of coin for someone who has definitely underperformed.

His hitting is still very good production for a CF. Combine that with top notch defense and you still have a highly productive player. You could argue that he hasn't justified the high price tag completely, but I bet the Mets wouldn't think twice about keeping it.

I mean his 2006 season certainly deserved to put him in MVP discussion. Not sure what happened in '05, but the next 2 years have been very valuable.