Free Agent Stock Watch: Adam LaRoche

Earlier in the summer, Adam LaRoche and the Diamondbacks had preliminary discussions about an extension, but that was before the D’Backs hired current GM Kevin Towers. It’s still possible that the D’Backs work out an extension with LaRoche under Towers, but it seems more likely that LaRoche will hit free agency (assuming both sides don’t exercise his $7.5MM mutual option for 2011). Here’s the outlook for LaRoche this offseason:

The Pros

  • He’s a consistently productive hitter, and has now combined 20 or more homers with an OPS of at least .775 in all seven of the seasons he’s played since becoming a starter.
  • LaRoche has generally stayed healthy, averaging 145 games per season in that seven-year stretch.
  • As a likely Type B free agent, he won’t cost a draft pick.
  • He doesn’t turn 31 until November, so his skills probably aren’t about to fade.

The Cons

  • Though he has traditionally been a strong second half player, LaRoche is slumping badly and has just three extra base hits this month.
  • He’ll join a group of free agent first basemen that includes Adam Dunn, Paul Konerko, Carlos Pena, Lance Berkman, Derrek Lee and Lyle Overbay. Teams looking for first basemen will have lots of selection this winter.
  • LaRoche drew limited interest from other clubs when he cleared waivers this summer.

The Verdict

LaRoche signed for $6MM last year after hitting .277/.355/.488 with 25 homers. He now has a .260/.321/.460 line with 23 homers and a career high 93 RBI. The numbers are similar this year and the market remains flush with first basemen, so a similar one-year $6MM deal seems likely for LaRoche.


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15 Comments on "Free Agent Stock Watch: Adam LaRoche"


EdinsonPickle
4 years 11 months ago

If he does sign for 1 yr 6m then whoever gets him will get a good deal, assuming of course he at least stays in line with his career numbers.

4 years 11 months ago

For some reason, I see a Nick Johnson-like 1 year, $5.5M with a 5.5M mutual club option.

Maybe as high as $6.5M per.
-wtk

AmericanMovieFan
4 years 11 months ago

Poor Adam LaRoche. He’s one of those guys that doesn’t have a terrible slash line, stays healthy, is consistently productive but can never find that long-term guaranteed deal that he must covet so badly. I don’t see why someone never gives him 3 years/$21MM or something like that and be done with it.

$1529282
4 years 11 months ago

There’s usually a decent crop of 1Bs available, and most teams have good 1B prospects in the system. No point spending on one that’s not going to be elite. They’re not like productive middle infielders or catchers in that regard.

LaRoche is a nice player, but I don’t see the sense in a 3 year deal for him.

gigantes2425
4 years 11 months ago

poor guy. hes in a group with other better hitting 1st basemen. i’d like to see where dunn ends up.

Bob George
4 years 11 months ago

He would make a lot of sense for the Cubs, who want a lefty hitting 1b with some power, but probably would prefer not to do a long term deal.

gigantes2425
4 years 11 months ago

i think every team would like a left handed hitting 1b with power

Bob George
4 years 11 months ago

Yes, I mean that out of the group of free agent 1b, LaRoche is the one that probably makes the most sense the for Cubs. If an NL team signs Dunn to the 4 year deal he’s demanding, that GM should be fired on the spot. I’m not a fan of Pena’s inability to make consistent contact (see Dunn), and Berkman is a huge question mark. Is he almost washed up or is it simply his knee that has ruined the season? And if it’s the knee, I would still stay away. That only leaves LaRoche and Overbay from the left side, and if a team can get LaRoche on a 1 or even 2 year deal at less than $10 million per year, that’s a good deal, assuming his production stays around his career numbers.

4 years 11 months ago

You take 9 LaRoche/Overbay’s and I’ll take 9 Dunn’s and lets see who ends up with the best record after a 162 game season. Do you want to take that bet? Dunn > LaRoche/Overbay combined.

$2902172
4 years 11 months ago

That’s not possible, silly.

Shikikazu
4 years 11 months ago

imagining 9 Dunn’s on the field makes me cringe they’d combine for a negative UZR of -180

bosoque
4 years 11 months ago

I dunno…I hear LaRoche has an incredible curveball.

4 years 11 months ago

Imagine Dunn at shortstop. Ohoho.

baseballz
4 years 11 months ago

I would take LaRoche on the Blue Jays on a two year deal @ 7mil per. He’s what we thought we were going to get in Overbay but never realized. Then all we need is to sign Beltre and dfa E5, then the team is set. But LaRoche on a two year deal would not be a bad thing.

Jim McGrath
4 years 11 months ago

If the Red Sox don’t sign Beltre–they should sign LaRoche or Overbay for two years or 1 plus an option and move Youk to third. Their home run production of 20-25 will be close to Beltre’s. In addition it will give the Sox another year to evaluate their two leading 1 B candidates–Anderson and Rizzo.

Dunn is Mr. consistency–would you want him as your DH replacing David Ortiz?