When Prince Fielder signed a 9-year, $214 million deal with the Detroit Tigers, it marked just the fourth $200 million contract in baseball history. It also raised some eyebrows and sparked a debate over whether the Tigers overpaid for the slugger.
Below is a look at how Fielder compares at the same ages to two other players that recently signed large contracts, Albert Pujols and Carl Crawford. In the chart we use Wins Above Replacement (WAR; via Fangraphs.com) which considers how many wins each player is worth and takes into consideration all aspects of a player’s game, including defence.
As we can see, Pujols is clearly the better player, but he was also much older when he signed his deal. On the other hand, Crawford and Fielder, despite being different types of players, compare favourably to each other in terms of value. And yet, it was Fielder that received a contract worth more than $70 million more than Crawford.