Jake Peavy is the highest paid player on the 2012 White Sox.
Thaaaat doesn't make me feel great, but there's only one more season before a nice, comfy buyout awaits him in 2013.
The next two highest paid players are Adam Dunn (who's got a $2 million raise coming for this year) and Alex Rios. That stings. That burns like everclear on the way down without the obvious benefit. Paul Konerko is also making $12 million next season like Rios, but since Alex is getting a slight raise in 2013 and Konerko has his deferred over time, we'll give the edge to ole' #51.
Peavy at least has proven capable of production while healthy, but throwing $26 million at two of the worst players in baseball makes one question whether free agency itself is all a farce. A joke. A trap that Bud Selig is perpetrating on all fans who hope for quick solutions to large problems. Aha! I knew it. Always hated Bud.
Hopefully John Danks' terms get announced soon!...and hopefully they're ridiculously front-loaded (they won't be) so everything can look better.
And yet, the Giants won the 2010 World Series with the combined giggleplex of the Aaron Rowand-Barry Zito deals, and the Cardinals just reeled in the trophy while paying over $20 million to Kyle Lohse and Jake "Turkey & Swiss" Westbrook.
There is hope. Even the most fiery, expensive, money-burning incompetence can be overcome.
At the very least, there can be cheer and fraternity enjoyed in looking at the disasters of their competitors in the AL.
New York Yankees - An obvious source
Alex Rodriguez, 35 years old - 6 more years, $143 million. A-Rod can still rake, and is still very, very good. Hell, he had 4.2 fWAR in 99 games last season! But you have to be very good to be worth the $29 million he's making next season. Like, in-his-prime Alex Rodriguez good. Not 35, on the decline, and probably not able to still play 3rd base when he's 40. Look into the future, Angels fans!
A.J. Burnett, 34 years old - 2 more years, $33 million. Teixiera is still too functional, and probably due for a bounce back to include, but given his back-to-back years with ERA over 5.00, and half of New York state wanting him dead, the folly of the Burnett deal keeps me warm during these winter months
Derek Jeter, 37 years old - 2 more years, $33 million. No one's ever going to actually call him an albatross, which is part of why he keeps chugging along. That and the still-decent bat.
Rafael Soriano, 32 years old - 2 more years, $25 million. They're paying a reliever not named Mariano Rivera $12.5 million a year!!!....they're also paying Mariano Rivera $15 million.
Tampa Bay Rays - No one. No one even close.
Boston Red Sox
Carl Crawford, 30 years old - 6 more years, $128 million. He'll probably be better, but a .289 OBP and a collapse of his defensive metrics lends itself to a lot of cynicism. Yeah, they're probably screwed.
John Lackey - 33 years old - 3 more years, $45.75 million. And he's out for all of 2012!
Toronto Blue Jays
Mark Teahen, 30 years old - 1 more year, $5.5 million. I'm bitter.
Brian Roberts, 34 years old - 2 more years, $20 million. Seeing as it's unclear whether his concussions issues will subside enough for him to ever play again, nah, this doesn't look too good. Nick Markakis' offense and defense is slipping, but he's only 28, so 3 more years of him at $42 million seems more like "not good" than "albatross"
Cleveland Indians - All their bad deals are coming off the books....it's like they're planning something. Kenny Williams should give serious consideration to ordering 300 pizzas to be delivered to Progressive Field.
Detroit Tigers - I really want to call 3 more years of 33 years old Victor Martinez at $38 million to be a DH with below-average power is a disaster, but it's probably still more like "not a good idea", or "a little stupid". But it's not like they can't play him anymore. Victor Martinez doesn't make me feel any better about Adam Dunn at all.
Kansas City Royals - Maybe Jeff Francouer, Yuniesky Betancourt, and Bruce Chen might add up to one loony contract....but not really.
Joe Mauer, 29 years old - 7 more years, $161 million. It's interesting that Mauer's contract is evenly distributed, without even a hint of backloading or deferral. $23 million a year, every year through 2018. It's like the Twins didn't even know how to throw money down a well, because they hadn't done it in so long.
Justin Morneau, 30 years old - 2 more years, $28 million. An otherwise perfectly fair deal if a sad wave of concussions weren't in the process of ruining his career. This isn't making me feel better at all.
Texas Rangers - Michael Young is pretty cruddy when he doesn't hit for high average (like he did last year), and paying Adrian Beltre till he's 36 (and possibly 37) isn't perfect, but...ah, screw it, this is a gleaming, gorgeous organization. Maybe the Yu Darvish contract will be stupid.
Los Angeles of Anaheim
Vernon Wells, 33 years old - 3 more years, $63 million. Totally stupid, and a sure bet to hamstring them for future deals. Yup...no more money for LaLa Land!
Torii Hunter, 36 years old - 1 more year, $18 million. The joke of lampooning contracts the White Sox might very well have doled out themselves gets old after a while, but at least we know Torii wouldn't be blocking a mega-prospect if he were with the White Sox. Not a chance.
Albert Pujols, 31 years old - 10 more years, $254 million. Soon...but not quite soon enough.
Oakland A's - Kurt Suzuki's not really very good, and he's their highest-paid player. He also only makes $5 million.
Ichiro Suzki, 38 years old - 1 more year, $17 million. Why even list him here? The White Sox are tooootally trading for him mid-season.
Chone Figgins, 33 years old - 2 more years, $17 million. Why even list him here? The White Sox tooootally would have signed them if they could have.
It's debatable whether any of this matches the sheer horror of 3 more years of Alex Rios for $37 million, or 3 more years of Adam Dunn for $44 million, but it should be comforting to know that at least whatever team takes the AL pennant will be dragging its fair share of dead weight with them.
Unless they're the Rays, Rangers, or Blue Jays. Those guys are just too smart.
Tags: a.j. burnett, Aaron Rowand, Adam Dunn, adrian beltre, albert pujols, Alex Rios, alex rodriguez, barry zito, baseball, boston red sox, brian roberts, bruce chen, Carl Crawford, chone figgins, Cleveland Indians, Derek Jeter, Detroit Tigers, ichiro suzuki, Jake Peavy, jake westbrook, jeff francouer, Joe Mauer, John Danks, john lackey, justin morneau, Kansas City Royals, Kenny Williams, kurt suzuki, kyle lohse, los angeles of anaheim, mariano rivera, Mark Teahen, michael young, Minnesota Twins, New York Yankees, nick markakis, Oakland A's, Paul Konerko, rafael soriano, San Francisco Giants, Seattle Mariners, st. louis cardinals, tampa bay rays, Texas Rangers, torii hunter, vernon wells, victor martinez, White Sox, yu darvish, yuniesky betancourt