Photo: Wikimedia Commons
In Major League Baseball history, teams have handed out 27 contracts worth at least $100 million. But two of the most recent signees will leave teams thinking twice before they hand out another $100 million contract for a player that doesn’t have a history of carrying their team.This past off-season, the two biggest free agents were Carl Crawford and Jayson Werth. Crawford signed a seven-year, $142 million contract with the Red Sox. And Werth signed with the Nationals for seven years and $126 million.
Together, those players made $32 million this season in salary and signing bonuses. They also hit .243 with 31 home runs and 37 stolen bases…combined. According to Fangraphs.com, Crawford was worth just 0.4 Wins above a replacement-level player (read: borderline minor leaguer) which translates to a dollar value of $1.6 million. Werth was worth a little more at 2.6 Wins or about $11.8 million.
While both Crawford and Werth have both been very good players for a very long time, neither player has ever being among the best in the game. They are all-stars, not Hall-of-Famers. And as a result, teams will likely be more hesitant to hand out big checks to that tier of very good players just below the superstars.
In the end, the greats, like Albert Pujols, will still get their big paydays. But it might be a while before we see another good-but-not-great player crack nine digits with their next contract.
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