20 players signed free agent deals worth at least $10MM last offseason. How'd those work out?
- Matt Holliday, Cardinals: seven years, $120MM. Holliday lived up to expectations in year one.
- John Lackey, Red Sox: five years, $82.5MM. The Red Sox would probably undo this contract given the chance. Lackey shook off the health problems of 2008-09 by tossing 215 innings, but his performance dropped off in most aspects.
- Jason Bay, Mets: four years, $66MM. Bay's numbers fell off a cliff, and then a concussion ended his season on July 25th. The Mets would undo this contract if they could.
- Chone Figgins, Mariners: four years, $36MM. Figgins' walk rate and batting average fell as the Ms moved him from leading off and playing third base to batting second and playing second base. There was also a July dugout altercation with manager Don Wakamatsu. The Mariners would undo this deal.
- Aroldis Chapman, Reds: six years, $30.25MM. No regrets here, as Chapman dominated in 13.3 relief innings for the Reds and electrified fans with the fastest pitch ever recorded. Other teams are wishing they'd outbid the Reds.
- Randy Wolf, Brewers: three years, $29.75MM. Like Lackey, Wolf provided innings but at reduced effectiveness. I'm guessing the Brewers are disappointed.
- Placido Polanco, Phillies: three years, $18MM. I imagine the Phillies are satisifed with this deal, as Polanco hit .298/.339/.386 while playing solid defense at third base.
- Joel Pineiro, Angels: two years, $16MM. He missed two months with an oblique strain, but the Halos are probably still happy given his 3.84 ERA in 152.3 innings.
- Mike Cameron, Red Sox: two years, $15.5MM. He played in only 48 games due to an abdominal strain that resulted in August surgery. The team probably regrets the contract.
- Marlon Byrd, Cubs: three years, $15MM. Byrd hit .293/.346/.429 in his Cubs debut and played capable defense; the Cubs are likely fine with his contract.
- Brandon Lyon, Astros: three years, $15MM. He tossed 78 innings of 3.12 ball, picking up 20 saves when Matt Lindstrom got hurt. The contract was panned at the time, but the Astros got what they hoped for.
- Jason Marquis, Nationals: two years, $15MM. I thought Marquis would be mediocre, not hurt. A surprising elbow injury limited him to 13 starts and has the Nats regretting the deal.
- Jose Valverde, Tigers: two years, $14MM. He had some elbow woes in September but generally met the team's expectations.
- Marco Scutaro, Red Sox: two years, $12.5MM. He stayed healthy and did a decent job on offense and defense, so the Sox are probably OK with the contract.
- Mark DeRosa, Giants: two years, $12MM. Wrist surgery limited him to 26 games, so the Giants would prefer a mulligan.
- Mike Gonzalez, Orioles: two years, $12MM. The lefty finished strong, but shoulder pain limited Gonzalez to 24.6 innings. The Orioles would like to have this one back.
- Andy Pettitte, Yankees: one year, $11.75MM. A groin injury limited Pettitte to 129 innings, but a 3.28 ERA made it worthwhile.
- Fernando Rodney, Angels: two years, $11MM. It was an unimpressive campaign, though not an unpredictable one given his '09 stats. The Angels would probably undo this deal.
- Adrian Beltre, Red Sox: one year, $10MM. Beltre had an MVP-type season and was a huge bargain for Boston.
- Ben Sheets, Athletics: one year, $10MM. Elbow problems limited Sheets to 119.3 innings of 4.53 ball. The deal was regrettable.
- There you have it: over half a billion bucks and 57 contract years given to the 20 most expensive free agents last winter. By my estimate, teams regret half of these deals.
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