Discussion: Next Young Position Player To Be Extended

In January, MLBTR's Mike Axisa named Yovani Gallardo, Matt Garza, Jair Jurrjens, and Wandy Rodriguez as candidates to be the next young starting pitcher to be extendedMatt Cain, John Danks, Chad Billingsley, and Brett Anderson were among those mentioned by commenters.  We forgot to name Scott Feldman and Nick Blackburn, who actually were extended since Mike's article.

Today let's consider young position players who could soon by locked up.  Recent signees include Adam Lind, Mark Reynolds, Denard Span, Andre Ethier, and Matt Kemp.

  • Joey Votto, Reds:  Votto will be eligible for arbitration for the first time after this season.  If the 26-year-old approaches his 2009 production, the Reds will have one of the NL's best hitters on their hands.
  • Ben Zobrist, Rays: Zobrist will also be eligible for arbitration for the first time after this season.  By measure of WAR, he was the best player in baseball last year.  The Rays may be inclined to lock him up if he retains 50% of that value. 
  • Pablo Sandoval, Giants: He won't be arbitration-eligible until after the 2011 season, so it may make sense to wait.
  • Kendry Morales, Angels: Morales is finishing up a six-year free agent contract and will be arbitration-eligible after the season.  Like Zobrist, he had a monster '09 and his team will probably wait at least a few months to see more of the same.
  • Shin-Soo Choo, Indians:  MLB.com's Anthony Castrovince has reported that the Indians would like to sign Choo to a five-year deal with a club option but the Scott Boras client hasn't shown interest as he enters his last pre-arbitration year.
  • Asdrubal Cabrera, Indians: Castrovince also mentioned Cabrera as a candidate for an extension.  He too will be arbitration-eligible after the season.
  • Nelson Cruz, Rangers: Cruz is an interesting case.  Though he turns 30 in July, he will be arbitration-eligible for the first time after the season.  Given his age, will the Rangers choose the year-to-year route?
  • Billy Butler, Royals: Butler told us in November that he's yet to have extension talks with the Royals.  Butler, 24 soon, will reach arbitration after the season.  Will his power continue to increase in 2010?
  • Hunter Pence, Astros:  He's been a solid performer for the Astros, but does his .288/.339/.487 career line warrant an extension?  2010 is Pence's first arbitration year, and the Astros will pay him $3.5MM.
  • Yunel Escobar, Braves: Though the Braves once pledged not to work with the Wasserman Media Group after the Rafael Furcal drama, I'm guessing that situation won't stop them from discussing an extension with Escobar's agent.  The 27-year-old shortstop reaches arbitration after the season.
  • Adam Jones, Orioles: Jones fell just short of Super Two arbitration-eligibility for 2010.  The Orioles will look for continued growth.
  • Stephen Drew, Diamondbacks:  Drew will be paid $3.4MM in 2010, his first arbitration year.  The D'Backs will have to deal with Boras if they want to sign Drew. 
  • Kurt Suzuki, Athletics: CSNBayArea's Mychael Urban reported in March that extension talks for Suzuki are already underway.  The A's catcher will be arbitration-eligible after the season.
  • Carlos Quentin, White Sox: Quentin passed on an offer from the Sox around the time they offered four years and $14MM to John Danks and Gavin Floyd.  Quentin signed for $3.2MM for his first arbitration year, and is looking to replicate the health and success of '08.


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62 Comments on "Discussion: Next Young Position Player To Be Extended"


5 years 4 months ago

i would love to see escobar locked up to something like a 6/45 or something like that…to lock him up for all his arb years and his first few FA years

what about gordon beckham, didnt he make the list?

5 years 4 months ago

I don’t think we listed anyone with less than a year of service time.

Ethanator99
5 years 4 months ago

How much does everyone think Votto would get with an extention? I’m thinking aroung 7 or 8 mil a year for like 5 years.

timmytwoshoezzz
5 years 4 months ago

Depends on how many years of arbitration/FA they cover. I think a four year/$45M offer might work. Reds have ALOT of money coming off the books after this season, so if Joey is going to get extended, this offseason would be the time to do it.

If GOD doesn’t hate Cincinnati, Joey and Walt can get something worked out

Yankees10
5 years 4 months ago

The names that jump out to me are Votto and Pence.

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
5 years 4 months ago

Two best on that list would have to be Votto and Sandoval. Both cases Ryan Braun’s 8 year $45M would probably be the benchmark.

jdub220
5 years 4 months ago

If Votto and Sandoval accept an 8/45MM extension, Jocketty and Sabean deserve medals.

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
5 years 4 months ago

Yeah… but it’s only because of lack of service time. If both wait until they reach arb years (and of course all else being equal) then Hanley’s contract would be a better benchmark.

jdub220
5 years 4 months ago

But Votto’s arb eligible after the year. I think he’ll be gunning for HanRam’s contract.

Sandoval will probably try to use Upton as a benchmark for his contract.

gweedoh565
5 years 4 months ago

I’ll let Votto leave the division if Pujols also leaves and never comes back ever ever ever again ever.

Signed – a Reds fan

jdub220
5 years 4 months ago

But Votto’s arb eligible after the year. I think he’ll be gunning for HanRam’s contract.

Sandoval will probably try to use Upton as a benchmark for his contract.

Triteon
5 years 4 months ago

I’d like to see Votto traded to the AL, or Japan or maybe the Bengals. Anything to get him out of the NL Central!

Signed — a Cardinals fan

jwsox
5 years 4 months ago

if he went to japan he would easily break the all time record of 800+ hr and would make a TON more money

jwsox
5 years 4 months ago

if he went to japan he would easily break the all time record of 800+ hr and would make a TON more money

Ferrariman
5 years 4 months ago

you do know that hideki matsui is the record holding player in salaries in japan…at 6million. and he was a 40+ HR hitter over their. votto won’t make a “ton” in terms of sports salaries.

Triteon
5 years 4 months ago

I’d like to see Votto traded to the AL, or Japan or maybe the Bengals. Anything to get him out of the NL Central!

Signed — a Cardinals fan

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
5 years 4 months ago

About Choo, unless the national Korean team does something great, doesn’t he have to serve 2 years of military service soon? Or is he becoming a citizen here?

BaseballFan0707
5 years 4 months ago

He can choose not to return home, but in that case, he could never go back, or else he would be arrested on the spot.

He would either have to be on a winning Korean national team (World Baseball Classic is too far off.), or choose to never come home.

TheJheykid
5 years 4 months ago

Jason Heyward is almost a lock to be extended and soon. Look at the B-Mac extention. B-Mac was going to be good and the team knew it. J-Hey will be GREAT and the team knows it. Why start him opening day unless you’re looking to lock him up?

BaseballFan0707
5 years 4 months ago

I was watching the Braves game yesterday. I have to be honest-I had a feeling something special was gonna happen, and I was so happy and excited to see him hit that absolute BOMB off of Big Z. I’m a Yanks fan, but still think it’s absolutely lovely to see such a thing.

Plus I also have a distinct dislike of Big Z. But that wasn’t the primary reason why i was so happy =p.

I think the Braves would be very wise to take this risk and sign him up soon. Probably a Braun contract, but a little richer. 8/60, perhaps?

Yankees420
5 years 4 months ago

Richer than Braun and the kid has had how many major league AB’s?

BaseballFan0707
5 years 4 months ago

I was presuming he would have a great year this year, and then get the extension.

bigpat
5 years 4 months ago

Andrew McCutchen, but maybe he is still too young. I think Votto is the best player on this list, and regardless of what the Reds are going to do with Yonder Alonzo, they need to keep Votto around for a while.

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
5 years 4 months ago

I still think the Reds should shop Alonso for a young pitching prospect. Alonso for Wade Davis makes sense on paper… but lets face it, armchair GMing is a far call from the real thing.

atlbraves2010
5 years 4 months ago

wade davis or jeremy hellickson…i really like both, and im pretty sure the rays would jump on that with pena probably leaving for FA after this year

atlbraves2010
5 years 4 months ago

wade davis or jeremy hellickson…i really like both, and im pretty sure the rays would jump on that with pena probably leaving for FA after this year

bringbackericthered
5 years 4 months ago

We have a ton of young pitching. Homer Bailey, Aroldis Chapman, Travis Wood, Johnny Cueto, Brad Boxberger.
We need a MLB ready SS or C who is young.

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
5 years 4 months ago

Well you can never have enough pitching… but I do see your point and if you think that’s the case, if you were to trade Alonso for a similar prospect (in other words a trade for Heyward straight up wouldn’t work), who would you like to see the Red get.

atlbraves2010
5 years 4 months ago

you could still go to the rays and go for guys like reid brignac or tim beckham
white sox for someone like dayan viecedo or tyler flowers, there are plenty of AL options that would love to have a DH like alonso….even the red sox for casey kelley
problem is, how many mega prospect for mega prospect swaps do you really see?

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
5 years 4 months ago

I think you’d get screwed trading Alonso for Brignac or Viciedeo, at this point both look average or less than average. Add to that Kelly is a pitcher and the only way I see him leaving Boston is in a deal for Gonzalez.

But you’re absolutely right… prospect trades are very rare.

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
5 years 4 months ago

Well you can never have enough pitching… but I do see your point and if you think that’s the case, if you were to trade Alonso for a similar prospect (in other words a trade for Heyward straight up wouldn’t work), who would you like to see the Red get.

bringbackericthered
5 years 4 months ago

We have a ton of young pitching. Homer Bailey, Aroldis Chapman, Travis Wood, Johnny Cueto, Brad Boxberger.
We need a MLB ready SS or C who is young.

5 years 4 months ago

That deal would be great. Rays are stacked in pitching and middle infield prospects. But according to BringBackEric, the Reds have a lot of pitching, but no one besides Chapman or Bailey has the upside of Davis or Hellickson. Maybe Tim Beckham and someone for Alonso?

Prospect for prospect deals are something I’d like to see be done a lot more in baseball. Both can fill other teams needs.

5 years 4 months ago

That deal would be great. Rays are stacked in pitching and middle infield prospects. But according to BringBackEric, the Reds have a lot of pitching, but no one besides Chapman or Bailey has the upside of Davis or Hellickson. Maybe Tim Beckham and someone for Alonso?

Prospect for prospect deals are something I’d like to see be done a lot more in baseball. Both can fill other teams needs.

Yankees10
5 years 4 months ago

You think Votto is better than Sandoval?

jwsox
5 years 4 months ago

votto will have a longer career for sure due to sandoval losing a ton of weight and still looking like he ate a few babies for an appetizer then ate an elephant for dinner

Yankees10
5 years 4 months ago

You think Votto is better than Sandoval?

jwsox
5 years 4 months ago

carlos quentin is right there with him and maybe slightly better WHEN HEALTHY

jwsox
5 years 4 months ago

carlos quentin is right there with him and maybe slightly better WHEN HEALTHY

MLB_in_the_Know
5 years 4 months ago

Jason Heyward.

5 years 4 months ago

your right about this one. i am thinking a longeria type contract.

dailyboxscores
5 years 4 months ago

normally, I would jump all over this, since the kid only has one MLB game under his belt.

But there is something special about Heyward. I’m not ready to lock him up long term just yet but I would not dismiss the notion as quickly as I would with others.

switchhitingjesus
5 years 4 months ago

Adam jones needs to be locked up.

GeraldIII
5 years 4 months ago

Rasmus

5 years 4 months ago

Now that they got Holliday signed I think they need to concentrate on Pujols before they go and add to payroll again. As good as Rasmus might turn out to be they really need to hold on to Albert. If they nickel and dime themselves to death and end up not being able to afford him they’ll have shot themselves in the foot spectacularly.

5 years 4 months ago

That said, Rasmus is theirs for the next 5 years no matter what they pay him. Signing him long term though would give them cost certainty, that may be a reason to do it especially with the extension Pujols is going to get looming. I guess it makes sense to know what you’re going to be paying in the future when your negotiating one of the biggest contracts in the sport.

5 years 4 months ago

Now that they got Holliday signed I think they need to concentrate on Pujols before they go and add to payroll again. As good as Rasmus might turn out to be they really need to hold on to Albert. If they nickel and dime themselves to death and end up not being able to afford him they’ll have shot themselves in the foot spectacularly.

drumzalicious
5 years 4 months ago

It would be interesting to see how Salcedo does in his first year. We could see the Braves trade Escobar. Quite a few times it’s been mentioned that Prado could be the one to shift to 3B and replace Chipper. While he wont be your 30 HR hitter if he bulked back up he could most definitely be a 20-25 HR hitter with a good bit of doubles.

melonis_rex
5 years 4 months ago

Jason Heyward would make sense to lock up on a Longoria-style deal NOW.

I’d love to see Anderson and Suzuki locked up as well, on the A’s.

melonis_rex
5 years 4 months ago

Jason Heyward would make sense to lock up on a Longoria-style deal NOW.

I’d love to see Anderson and Suzuki locked up as well, on the A’s.

BigRedOne
5 years 4 months ago

The Reds need to lock up Votto with a 20 year contract.

BigRedOne
5 years 4 months ago

The Reds need to lock up Votto with a 20 year contract.

5 years 4 months ago

Jim Hendry needs to get in on some of this. Maybe he could lock up Theriot, Fontenot and Hoffpaiur long term, something like 5-years, $75 million a piece. He looooves handing out those long, expensive contracts.

timmytwoshoezzz
5 years 4 months ago

Absolutely, and he can’t forget to add the no-trade clause

5 years 4 months ago

Jim Hendry needs to get in on some of this. Maybe he could lock up Theriot, Fontenot and Hoffpaiur long term, something like 5-years, $75 million a piece. He looooves handing out those long, expensive contracts.

jbcardsfan
5 years 4 months ago

Tim,
I believe you forgot Colby Rasmus. I think he’s got a good shot at getting locked up soon.

5 years 4 months ago

Granted it’s a long shot, but shouldn’t Prince Fielder at least be included in the discussion since the Brewers and Boras have talks ongoing?

5 years 4 months ago

Granted it’s a long shot, but shouldn’t Prince Fielder at least be included in the discussion since the Brewers and Boras have talks ongoing?