TVT 2041.3 - Set in Stone

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TVT 2041.3 - Set in Stone

Post by StormZ_23 » Thu Dec 26, 2019 11:21 pm

Well, they did it. They actually signed a free agent. Not just any free agent, a MASSIVE free agent. After a failed attempt at signing Feliciano Rafael earlier in the off-season, no one thought the Mounties would try to sign a big name. Well, they only went and signed possibly the biggest name, or at least the biggest name that was left. Seeing what the Mounties paid him, it's no wonder this guy didn't sign until spring training. You have to imagine what his demands were in the beginning of the off-season. That player is Aaron Stone.

The contract structure looks like this, 30M/30M/15M/15M/15M, with a player opt out after the third season and a fifth year team option. Just looking at the contract, you see that it's front loaded so the big money doesn't interfere with the potential arbitration salaries that the young players will be receiving in a couple seasons. It's a very risky deal, but it's the price you have to pay to get one of the best players in a premium position. So you may be wondering, why would the Mounties sign a catcher? Well, the current catching situation isn't great. Andres Martinez is on the final year of his contract and he is the not the long term solution. Angelo Deluccio is a little too far out to fit in the Mounties window. We also assume because of his failed PED test, the front office would rather use him as a trade chip for proven talent, possibly a pitcher or shortstop. The Mounties could have tried a cheaper option, but where's the fun in that? The Mounties have money, you can't just let it sit there. There's too much to talk about when you think about Stone's production. Last year with Yellow Springs, he had a 4.7 WAR in 114 games. With him sitting in the middle of the lineup behind a bunch of young, talented bats, there is no telling how well Stone could perform.

With this signing, there are only a few positions that the Mounties really need. Obviously a top of the rotation pitcher would be nice, but with a few young starters poised to make their debuts this season, they may not need one, or at least they could use one of those young starters in a trade. The same can be said about the bullpen as a few young guys should be up this season. The other position that the Mounties could look to improve is shortstop. Carlos Martinez was a solid hitter in his rookie season but he was abysmal defensively. So, look for the Mounties to scour the shortstop market this season.

The Stone signing made fan interest shoot up, but what would really make fan interest skyrocket is a playoff birth. This may be the year where the Mounties finally make it back to the playoffs. We can only hope.
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Re: TVT 2041.3 - Set in Stone

Post by usnspecialist » Fri Dec 27, 2019 1:55 am

not surprising you went after Rafael, he would have made the most sense for you (especially since you know he has success in the division). That being said, stone is a nice piece for you and the contract structure is perfect. I have a feeling if Ted and I still did the FA podcast we would be applauding this deal.
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Re: TVT 2041.3 - Set in Stone

Post by ae37jr » Fri Dec 27, 2019 2:36 pm

I dislike the opt out here. The whole point of front loading is to gain a bargain on the back end. The opt out negates that. Stone stay productive and he is 3 and out. The AAV is north of $25 mil. Not great.

If he opts in, then he values himself less then $15 mil. And if HE values himself that low, then he probably fell off a bit from what he is now. So what looks like a bargain now, won't be then. Making the opt out a lose/lose.
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Re: TVT 2041.3 - Set in Stone

Post by usnspecialist » Fri Dec 27, 2019 2:54 pm

ae37jr wrote:
Fri Dec 27, 2019 2:36 pm
I dislike the opt out here. The whole point of front loading is to gain a bargain on the back end. The opt out negates that. Stone stay productive and he is 3 and out. The AAV is north of $25 mil. Not great.

If he opts in, then he values himself less then $15 mil. And if HE values himself that low, then he probably fell off a bit from what he is now. So what looks like a bargain now, won't be then. Making the opt out a lose/lose.
I somehow missed the opt-out (despite it being in the write-up). I like this significantly less now, although I'm on record as being anti opt-out and have never offered one in my time in the league.
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Re: TVT 2041.3 - Set in Stone

Post by jleddy » Fri Dec 27, 2019 11:34 pm

I know I'll be in the minority on this, but I like the opt-out. While the decision-making of OOTP players often doesn't mirror that of real life, one would think Stone would opt-out if his production (and open-market value) remains high by the time that decision needs to be made. Therefore, that means Vancouver got a lot of production during the three year's of Stone's service, and then has the luxury of freeing up $15M in salary commitments and by then, PED Boy could be ready to take over the reins at catcher. Yes, in that scenario an AAV of $25M is high but spending more money to drive down the AAV over the course of a contract isn't exactly prudent. I'm all about cutting loose a year early than a year late.

Case in point, I was in favor of JD Drew's contract with the Dodgers, which had an opt-out, seemingly one of the first MLB deals to feature that clause. Drew played well his first two years with Los Angeles (7.2 WAR combined), then opted out to cash-in in free agency once again. Drew would "only" put up 4.8 WAR in the next two seasons with Boston and the Dodgers were able to fill Drew's production in the next two years with rookies Andre Ethier and Matt Kemp, while using the now available funds to sign the likes of Jason Schmidt and Juan Pierre. Now, those two signings didn't work out but it doesn't take away the fact that the Dodgers maximized Drew and were able to fill his departure (ie potentially Deluccio for Stone for Vancouver) and be players in free agency because of the opt-out.
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Re: TVT 2041.3 - Set in Stone

Post by StormZ_23 » Sat Dec 28, 2019 1:14 am

jleddy wrote:
Fri Dec 27, 2019 11:34 pm
I know I'll be in the minority on this, but I like the opt-out. While the decision-making of OOTP players often doesn't mirror that of real life, one would think Stone would opt-out if his production (and open-market value) remains high by the time that decision needs to be made. Therefore, that means Vancouver got a lot of production during the three year's of Stone's service, and then has the luxury of freeing up $15M in salary commitments and by then, PED Boy could be ready to take over the reins at catcher. Yes, in that scenario an AAV of $25M is high but spending more money to drive down the AAV over the course of a contract isn't exactly prudent. I'm all about cutting loose a year early than a year late.

Case in point, I was in favor of JD Drew's contract with the Dodgers, which had an opt-out, seemingly one of the first MLB deals to feature that clause. Drew played well his first two years with Los Angeles (7.2 WAR combined), then opted out to cash-in in free agency once again. Drew would "only" put up 4.8 WAR in the next two seasons with Boston and the Dodgers were able to fill Drew's production in the next two years with rookies Andre Ethier and Matt Kemp, while using the now available funds to sign the likes of Jason Schmidt and Juan Pierre. Now, those two signings didn't work out but it doesn't take away the fact that the Dodgers maximized Drew and were able to fill his departure (ie potentially Deluccio for Stone for Vancouver) and be players in free agency because of the opt-out.
This was similar to my thinking too. I get that the AAV is really high, but that's really only a problem if Stone starts playing really badly, which I don't expect to happen. Of course if that does happen, then the contract would be a loss regardless if there was an opt out or not. I don't necessarily like the opt out, Stone demanded it. However, I don't think it's a huge negative, mainly because I structured the deal so I am still able to add talented players with consistent salaries, meaning that a random season won't have a huge spike in player salary due to me adding a new player. I do admit I probably could have negotiated without an opt out, now knowing that the only other team to offer Stone was YS9 and it was only a 1 year deal. Definitely a learning experience for me.

Of course, if he does opt out and I don't have a plan for catcher after he leaves, then it's an issue. Deluccio will be ready by then, but I definitely won't count out trading him, though I do really like the nickname "PED Boy". Getting a talented catcher in the draft could make my life easier, but that's all down to luck really. All in all, the contract isn't great, but I focused more on the structure of the money long term so that it fits well with the arbitration of my young players and the ability to add more talent in the future.
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