Dejan Kovacevic noted on Saturday that the Pirates have made a formal long-term offer to righty Ian Snell. As I wrote last Wednesday, the going rate for three arb years of a good young starter is $13-14MM. Kovacevic believes it was a four-year offer, probably tacking on the ’08 season for less than a million bucks before covering Snell’s arb years.
Though the going rate is pretty well established, there is definitely still room for negotiation. Look at the differences between the three comparable deals:
- Jamie Shields (signed January ’08) – extra money for pre-arb years, third arb year a club option, club options to buy out two possible free agency years. Also includes performance bonuses. Shields took a little more cash upfront for possibly a lot less down the road. The most team-friendly deal.
- Chris Young (signed April ’07) – third arb year guaranteed, club option for one free agency year. The middle ground deal between Shields and Cain.
- Matt Cain (signed March ’07) – club option for third arb year, but it may vest. Also a $1MM signing bonus and another $600K in incentives. The Giants don’t get in the way of Cain’s free agent payday after the 2011 season.
Contract info from Cot’s Baseball Contracts.