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Wise to buy out arbitration years?

Wise to buy out arbitration years?

PostPost #1 by Don » February 24th, 2011, 4:18 pm

Is it wise to buy out some position players arbitration years to hedge against future success?

Putting on your GM hat, does it make some sense to talk long term deals with Adam Jones, Matt Wieters, and maybe Brian Matusz? I rarely want to do long term deals with pitchers, but sometimes exceptions can be made for those guys that show future Cy Young trophy winning stuff.

My quick answer is yes. Extending one or all into a season or two beyond arbitration eligible seasons takes thier prime years and hedges growth to value.

The one recent example that could have saved a few dollars in a multi-year deal was Luke Scott. I bet the Orioles could have done a 5 year deal for 20 million dollars after the 2008 season. The Orioles would have locked his arbitration years and a year of free agency. The Orioles choose a yearly deal with arbitration cases every season. He is likely to cost the Orioles more in 4 years of service and he still hits the open market after 6 season of restricted free agency.

I am not saying it was wise to sign him to a long term deal. I simply want to show that you can save a few dollars by extending them now. As a GM, you will have to feel the ball player will continue to grow and is still within your long term plans. I do not know what it will take to sign any of the three mentioned players, but it is something for the front office to consider.

They could extend a few and now exact pay roll for the core group of Orioles. It saves a few dollars and the Orioles could continue to add players with this core group. This is the practice we see with the 2011 team and it could be a staple for the 2012, 2013, and 2014 plans.

What are your thoughts?
Last edited by Don on February 24th, 2011, 5:26 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Wise to buy out arbitration years?

PostPost #2 by 2131andBeyond » February 24th, 2011, 5:24 pm

Right now, Jones and Matusz for sure would be awesome to lock down. Jones is showing he will be a .280 hitter with 20 HRs at a solid line, both of which could go up with a better view at the plate this year. He has the power to hit 25-30 HRs, and could hit .290, just needs to calm down in the box. Matusz is obvious. He's a special kid. Lock him up. Maybe after this season or after 2012, but before he hits years 2 and 3 of arbitration for sure.

As good of a catcher as Wieters is, I don't know. The bat needs to show SOMETHING. Just a little spark. Either a jump in average (.265-.280 this year would be a nice improvement, yet wishful thinking) or HRs (20-30 range) would make it more likely for him to sign. Not that the team doesn't want him long term, but with Caleb Joseph working hard in the farm, Wieters needs to step it up and really earn it on both sides of the plate. Enough of the talk about controlling a staff and this and that. He said in his ST interview recently that he likes extra responsibilities. If so, prove it. THEN I'd be more willing.
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Re: Wise to buy out arbitration years?

PostPost #3 by Jordan Tuwiner » February 25th, 2011, 12:26 am

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Re: Wise to buy out arbitration years?

PostPost #4 by Old Sneakers » March 9th, 2011, 6:25 pm

Don wrote:Is it wise to buy out some position players arbitration years to hedge against future success?

Putting on your GM hat, does it make some sense to talk long term deals with Adam Jones, Matt Wieters, and maybe Brian Matusz?


With players you really want to hang onto and build around? Yes, Absolutely!

With Matt Wieters, he is already an above average Catcher. The question is when? I would say wait a year or two from now and if he holds his present course of improvement. Then begin your long term negotiation.

With Brian Matuzs, he's farther away from what he can become but once you know he is going to be one of the best lefties in the game then you lock him up.

Adam Jones on the other hand i consider in a different tier of talent than the two prior. He has a chance to become someone that will be a fixture in the 3rd spot in your lineup. He also has a chance to remain just as he is. A guy that should hit sixth or seventh and be an average to slightly above average CF.

To me, it's a tough call with Jones. I of course want to see him succeed. How much better will he become? How long from now? For now I would let him go to arbitration and see what happens.
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