Holy crap are the zeroes flying around the baseball world right now. A perfect confluence of a new CBA, mega star free agents, and the first normal off season in two years has opened the floodgates of spending.
After all, Andrew Heaney just landed 2 years and $25 million guaranteed. Taijuan Walker is younger but also has an injury history and landed 4 years and $72 million.
None of those deals come close to the $360 million Aaron Judge landed, but show the cost of starting pitching is more than most expected.
Judge is the latest player to sign a $300 million deal and the first to do so while his age started with a 3. What these mega-mega deals tell us about the modern game and the cost of winning.
That’s not for a lack of trying by the San Diego Padres who offered both Judge and Turner larger contracts than they eventually signed. Ultimately the Padres brought in Xander Bogaerts on an 11 year $280 million deal.
The Xander contract has brought about one of my favorite things in life. An early Christmas present that puts a smile on my face: tears and angst in bahstun. And just because it makes me happy, they’ve apparently hit a new low.
They shouldn’t cry too much because the team did bring in Kanley Jansen and Japanese star Masataka Yoshida. I’m interested to see how Yoshida works out. His bat is said to be far ahead of his glove, but left field in Fenway is the size of a normal bathroom.
All in all I think the Giants will consider missing out on Arson Judge.
The G men did land Angels tormentor Mitch Haniger on a three year deal at 1/9the the money.
All in all I think the craziest deal this week went to Cody Bellinger. Look, I love defense more than most but the Cubs are basically paying him what the Dodgers didn’t want to pay him. That’s insane.
Meanwhile the Dodgers are pulling an Angels and bringing in Jason Heyward, who the Cubs are paying $18 million to not hit for them.
I’ll see Heyward out in Spring Training. I’ll also catch some of the World Baseball Classic. David Fletcher will play for Team Italy in the WBC. Is mom is Italian, he lived there for a while, and speaks fluent Italian.
Fletcher is also hosting a poker tournament in Seal Beach on Friday, January 20th to raise funds for Summer Harvest. Come out for a good time for a good cause.
I might also see the Cubs newest addition, Wilson Contreras. He steps into the giant shoes of Yadier Molina. Contreras might be the opposite of Yadi’s style, but he makes them much better.
Interestingly enough, we were one of the high bidders for Contreras.
Life is slowly improving for minor league players. Now it will get a little safer for fans. MLB now requires protective netting down each foul line by 2025. Minor league ball is all about families and kids. I don’t see why the owners can’t get this done by opening day 2023.
And it has been discussed here already, but if you missed the piece on MLB using multiple baseballs, give it a full read here.
As for the hometown team, I think Jeff Fletcher asks the same question we all do.
From the team site, here’s where the Angels stand after the Winter Meetings.
As far as the further future for the Angels, take a look at TBW’s rankings of our prospects. Nice to see some guys I think will contribute at the big league level soon.
And I’ll leave you with a little off season optimism as we head into the holiday season.
Enjoy the weekend, be safe. As always, link what I missed.