Discussion: Joey Votto Extension

We haven't heard anything about the Reds considering an extension offer for first baseman Joey Votto, but he's high on our speculative list of candidates.

Votto, 26, finished second in the Rookie of the Year voting in 2008 and followed with an even better performance in his second full season.  Unfortunately, issues related to the passing of Votto's father affected him early in '09.

Votto will be eligible for arbitration for the first time after this season.  The Reds signed him for $550K for 2010, throwing several extra tens of thousands his way in the name of goodwill.  Let's consider a few possible comparables for Votto:

  • Adam Lind recently signed a four-year, $18MM deal with the Blue Jays with three club options.  He gave up his three arbitration years for $15MM.  The option years cover his first three years of free agent eligibility and are in the $7-8MM range.  At this stage in their careers Votto has the batting average advantage, home runs are about even, and Lind wins in RBIs and runs.  Votto's other advantages: a strong rookie season and the ability to play a respectable first base.  Lind has split his time between left field and DH.
  • Kevin Youkilis signed a four-year, $41.125MM deal in January of '09.  The deal bought out two remaining arbitration years and two free agent seasons, with a club option on a third.  The difference is that Youkilis was less accomplished in every way when he reached arbitration for the first time, and the Red Sox didn't lock him up until a year later. 
  • Mark Reynolds was signed with 1689 plate appearances across roughly 2.8 seasons whereas Votto will have roughly 1870 across 3.2 seasons.  Plus Reynolds was signed a year prior to arbitration-eligibility.  Reynolds' three arbitration years went for $23.5MM, assuming the D'Backs pick up his 2013 option.
  • Prince Fielder gave up his first two arbitration years for $18MM.  This is another tough comp because with three years service time, Fielder outpaced where I project Votto to be in all categories except batting average.  Plus, Scott Boras drove a hard bargain and didn't give up Fielder's third arb year or any free agent years.
  • Ryan Zimmerman stacks up OK, although he had a .282 average and 58 home runs at the time of his deal against a projected .308 and 83 for Votto.  He gave up the same five-year slice of his career the Reds might crave for Votto, at a price of $45MM.
  • I think a five-year deal in the $50MM range would make sense for the Reds and Votto.  He'd give up his three arbitration years for roughly $22MM, plus a couple of free agent years for $14MM each.  Of course, a lot depends on Votto's 2010 season.  Keeping CHONE's rates but upping the at-bats to 575, Votto is projected for something like a .303 average, 29 home runs, 99 RBIs, and 85 runs.


21 Responses to Discussion: Joey Votto Extension Leave a Reply

  1. also for those wonderin about alonso. he was assigned to aa carolina where he will be the primary left fielder according to mark sheldon

  2. davidmp2 5 years ago

    I can see a deal in the 6 year $45 million range. Votto’s medical condition should not be dismissed. While Votto could continue to receive proper treatment and have a long and successful career, there is also a chance he and Khalil Greene share the same path.

    With Harang and Arroyo coming off the books, I wouldn’t be surprised AT ALL, to see Votto given a deal next season. I also could see the Reds locking up Jay Bruce and Johnny Cueto depending upon their years.

  3. bjsguess 5 years ago

    Agreed – $50m sounds just about right. Although as a Reds fan you should start praying that he takes a deal closer to Lind’s.

  4. BradyAndersonsSideburns 5 years ago

    you have to find a way to lock the man up, he’s a beast

  5. Ethanator99 5 years ago

    I hope to see this guy in a Reds uniform for a long time. He is by far the best player on this team.

  6. RedbirdRuffian 5 years ago

    If he matches the 09 numbers Jocketty has to get him locked up. Reds may contend this year and should for years to come especially if they keep coming up with these young stars and they will have to get payroll stability and keep the team together.

  7. 04Forever 5 years ago

    I would have to say that the Kevin Youkilis deal is a good place to start. Votto has put up solid numbers for two years straight and has hit the ground running this season as well. The Youk deal was a good deal for both parties, question being is if the Reds are willing or can invest that much, I think they can and should

  8. AmericanMovieFan 5 years ago

    4-6 years in the $9-12MM range sounds about right for Votto. A heavily backloaded/deferred 5 yrs./$60MM would be my guess/recommendation. ($5MM, $8MM, $11MM, $14MM, $17MM) with a $5MM signing bonus deferred beyond the length of the contract.

  9. BigRedOne 5 years ago

    8 years at $85 million

    Votto is a player who takes care of himself. He attends a pro sports training facilility in Florida in the offseason. He also appears to have put his depression behind him. Add to that he is highly motivated to succeed and he has the makeup as the cornerstone for this organization. I totally see the Reds making a Ryan Braun type contract offer to Votto and him accepting.

  10. slr5607 5 years ago

    if i were a Reds fan I would want to see him with the Reds for a long time. He will and should be the highest paid player on the team. I think that if he signed for 5 years 50 million, he would be doing the Reds a favor.

    If Alonso does not work out in the Outfield at AA, then the Reds will need to make a decision…trade the more expensive Votto or the top prospect Alonso. Knowing the Reds, they might want to keep payroll down and dealing Votto for good, cheaper, young players would be the easiest way to do it.

    • Ferrariman 5 years ago

      5/50 wouldn’t make him the highest paid. not even second highest.

      • slr5607 5 years ago

        I was saying that the 5/50 idea is too low. The way he produces, arbitration years will likely be 8, 10, 12…then he is looking at a free agent contract of 15-18 million per season. If he is going to sign a 5 year deal, I would think he should sign something in the 65-70 million dollar deal. Votto is better than all of those younger guys at their times of their extentions (except for Fielder who only signed a 2 year deal)

        • BigRedOne 5 years ago

          I’m going to blow your theory out of the water. Ryan Braun signed an 8 year $45 million contract with the Brewers and has better numbers: 2007 BA .324 HR 34 RBI 97, 2008 BA.285 HR 37 RBI 106, 2009 BA .320 HR 32 RBI 114, plus 2 silver sluggers, 2 all-stars, and Rookie of the Year award. So, if Braun signed for 8 years at $45 mil, I expect Votto to go for 8 years $40 million

          • slr5607 5 years ago

            while you are 100% correct with the Braun comparison, I think it would be crazy for Votto to make a similar deal. It is widely known that the Braun deal favors the Brewers so much that it is most likely going to hurt team’s negotiations with their young star players. I think someone like Pablo Sandoval could sign a Ryan Braun like deal (after 1 season of promise), but I think since Votto has proven himself, he could hold out for more. If Votto allows this to go year to year, he will make 30 million+ in his first two free agent years alone. Obviously this is if he stays healthy, but if Votto was a free agent right now he would get 15 million per season.

            The fact that the Brewers made out with the Ryan Braun deal, that should not make every player sign for under what they are worth.

        • BigRedOne 5 years ago

          I’m going to blow your theory out of the water. Ryan Braun signed an 8 year $45 million contract with the Brewers and has better numbers: 2007 BA .324 HR 34 RBI 97, 2008 BA.285 HR 37 RBI 106, 2009 BA .320 HR 32 RBI 114, plus 2 silver sluggers, 2 all-stars, and Rookie of the Year award. So, if Braun signed for 8 years at $45 mil, I expect Votto to go for 8 years $40 million

  11. FI2 5 years ago

    Just for the sake of discussion, would Votto want to do a 5 year deal? If he gives up 2 free agent years he hits the market for the first time going into his age 32 season – it’s going to be tough to get a 6-8 year, break the bank type contract at 32. It’s a little easier if he’s a free agent going into his age 30 season.

    Sure it’s a tradeoff for some security now, but the age matters. Zimmerman gave up 2 free agent years but he still hits the market going into his age 29 season.

    Just putting it out there.

  12. I’m a big Reds fan and I wished they would have spent a couple extra mil this offseason and locked Votto up for a Braun type contract 6-7yrs/50mil. Now that they have waited for him to yet another successful year it will make a big difference in the contract if he continues his success. I think we will see 4/40 or 5/55 with an option for 6th year at 15mil

    • Ferrariman 5 years ago

      braun signed an 8/45 deal.

      • I think that kind of deal could work adjusted for inflation since then maybe 8/64 could get it done. That would guarantee Votto financial security for life if he is financially smart and doesn’t waste it all like some. It would also be good value for the Reds. Ultimately his depression streak last season is still a factor when you are talking long term contract therefore that will make a deal like this more realistic.

      • BigRedOne 5 years ago

        Compare Braun’s numbers to Votto. It is clear Braun has better numbers. I don’t see how Votto could justify getting any more, considering all salaries in baseball are down.

        • Yankees420 5 years ago

          “8 years at $85 million

          Votto is a player who takes care of himself. He attends a pro sports training facilility in Florida in the offseason. He also appears to have put his depression behind him. Add to that he is highly motivated to succeed and he has the makeup as the cornerstone for this organization. I totally see the Reds making a Ryan Braun type contract offer to Votto and him accepting.” – BigRedOne

          Did you change your mind? Maybe a typo? Anyway Braun took a WAY below fair deal to stay with the Brewers, his contract is the exception, not the rule. There was a good point above about how a 5 year deal would make Votto a FA at 32, so I think Votto should sign a 3 year deal maybe around 20-25MM and put himself in position to get a better FA deal.

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