Joey Votto Agrees To Extension With Reds

The Reds have officially agreed to a three-year extension with Joey Votto, reports John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer (on Twitter). MLB.com's Mark Sheldon first reported the agreement. The deal, which is a pending a physical scheduled for Monday, will be worth $38MM.  Votto is represented by Dan Lozano.

Votto will earn $5.5MM in 2011, $9.5MM in '12m and $17MM mil in '13 along with a $6MM signing bonus, according to Jon Heyman of SI (via Twitter).  The first baseman was entering his first season of arbitration eligibility, so the contract will cover the remaining three years of team control. Because the extension only buys out his arbitration seasons, the 27-year-old will still be able to become a free agent after the 2013 season.

Following an MVP campaign in 2010, Votto would have been in line for a massive raise through arbitration. When MLBTR's Ben Nicholson-Smith examined Votto's potential 2011 salary last August, he found that the first baseman's numbers stacked up favorably to other sluggers who received $7MM+ in their first arbitration eligible seasons.

Taking into account Votto's strong finish and MVP award, his 2011 cost likely would have been even higher than $7MM, and would only have increased over the next two years. With this deal, the arbitration process will be avoided, providing both sides with some cost certainty. While $38MM is a significant price to pay for three non-free agent years, it's not unprecedented – Ryan Howard earned $44MM from the Phillies over his first three arbitration seasons.

Votto's deal is the third major extension the Reds have agreed to this winter. In December, Bronson Arroyo signed a three-year, $35MM contract to remain in Cincinnati, and Jay Bruce signed for six years and $51MM.

SI.com's Jon Heyman first reported that Votto and the Reds were "working hard" on a three-year extension.


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144 Comments on "Joey Votto Agrees To Extension With Reds"


4 years 6 months ago

Well cost certainty is there. But doesn’t buy out free agency. It would make sense if they try to rework it in two offseasons. Really good deal for both sides.

lazerball
4 years 6 months ago

Seems pretty fair for both sides, and provides the obvious benefit of cost certainty. Still would have been nice for the reds if they could have worked a free agency year or two into the deal.

4 years 6 months ago

1 year wonder… he should meet chris johnson

Brad426
4 years 6 months ago

He’s already played 3 full seasons in the bigs and has a career OPS of .958. So maybe a 3 year wonder…

bas_in_denmark
4 years 6 months ago

Who is Chris Johnson? 3B for the Astros?

BravesRed
4 years 6 months ago

RB for the Tennessee Titans.

bas_in_denmark
4 years 6 months ago

Ahh.. Okay. Thanks! Thought it was a baseball player.

4 years 6 months ago

ya not many people know who chris johnson is because he only had 1 good year…. kinda like votto

YanksFanSince78
4 years 6 months ago

How about two good years and one ridiculous 2,000 rushing yeards season?

bas_in_denmark
4 years 6 months ago

Ahh.. Okay. Thanks! Thought it was a baseball player.

bas_in_denmark
4 years 6 months ago

Ahh.. Okay. Thanks! Thought it was a baseball player.

BravesRed
4 years 6 months ago

RB for the Tennessee Titans.

BravesRed
4 years 6 months ago

RB for the Tennessee Titans.

Stl_Great
4 years 6 months ago

He’s a Running Back for the Tennessee Titans, Recently bought cars for his whole team, looks like predator from the Predator Series.

bas_in_denmark
4 years 6 months ago

Who is Chris Johnson? 3B for the Astros?

bas_in_denmark
4 years 6 months ago

Who is Chris Johnson? 3B for the Astros?

yabud
4 years 6 months ago

1 year wonder? This must be your rookie year of watching baseball… Votto’s numbers over the past 3 years:

2008: .297/.368/.506 with 24HR/32-2b/84RBI (24 years old)
2009: .322/.414/.567 with 25HR/38-2b/84RBI (25 years old)
2010: .324/.424/.600 with 37HR/36-2b/114RBI (26 years old)
2011:… entering his prime at 27.

I believe you are mistaken sir.

lazerball
4 years 6 months ago

Beaten by two minutes! Plus you included age. Good show.

lazerball
4 years 6 months ago

Beaten by two minutes! Plus you included age. Good show.

bleedrockiepurple
4 years 6 months ago

He definitely is no 1 year wonder but many hadn’t heard of him till this year when he really broke out and became an MVP caliber player. Probably b/c the Reds hadn’t made much of themselves till 2010 which is a pity for a guy with his ability. Dude is a monster for years to come.

bleedrockiepurple
4 years 6 months ago

He definitely is no 1 year wonder but many hadn’t heard of him till this year when he really broke out and became an MVP caliber player. Probably b/c the Reds hadn’t made much of themselves till 2010 which is a pity for a guy with his ability. Dude is a monster for years to come.

bleedrockiepurple
4 years 6 months ago

He definitely is no 1 year wonder but many hadn’t heard of him till this year when he really broke out and became an MVP caliber player. Probably b/c the Reds hadn’t made much of themselves till 2010 which is a pity for a guy with his ability. Dude is a monster for years to come.

BravesRed
4 years 6 months ago

Chris Johnson was robbed of the Rookie of the Year, and the MVP in back to back years. Chris Johnson has been in the 2009, 2010, and now the 2011 Pro Bowl, so you have no idea what you’re talking about. And, he had over 1,300 yards this past season.

4 years 6 months ago

Disagree with that. Unless Arian Foster deserves MVP, CJ does not. He was not MVP because they missed playoffs. I’d argue AP more valuable than him last year.

BravesRed
4 years 6 months ago

Johnson should have gotten it in 2009-2010 season. Peyton Manning wasn’t anywhere near Johnson.

BravesRed
4 years 6 months ago

Johnson should have gotten it in 2009-2010 season. Peyton Manning wasn’t anywhere near Johnson.

BravesRed
4 years 6 months ago

Okay, I see what you mean on that. I wasn’t talking about MVP in back to back years. I was talking about Rookie of the Year in 2008-2009, and MVP in 2009-2010.

Guest
4 years 6 months ago

ummm, this is a baseball website, who cares about football

Guest
4 years 6 months ago

ummm, this is a baseball website, who cares about football

BravesRed
4 years 6 months ago

People can reference now baseball questions on the weekly chats, but I can’t talk about football on here? That seems biased against me.

4 years 6 months ago

Try NFLtraderumors.com…. if there is one. It sounds like Chris Johnson picked the wrong sport.

4 years 6 months ago

Try NFLtraderumors.com…. if there is one. It sounds like Chris Johnson picked the wrong sport.

BravesRed
4 years 6 months ago

People can reference now baseball questions on the weekly chats, but I can’t talk about football on here? That seems biased against me.

Guest
4 years 6 months ago

ummm, this is a baseball website, who cares about football

lazerball
4 years 6 months ago

wOBA/OPS by year:

2007 – .387/.907 (89 pa)
2008 – .373/.874 (first full year)
2009 – .418/.981
2010: .439/1.024

ONE YEAR WONDER!!!1!

Amish_willy
4 years 6 months ago

Damn, hit like instead of reply. Votto is a beast. Anyone who is only 3 full seasons into his career and whose second best OPS+ is 156, is very good, and probably amongst the best at the time. Keep in mind I have no ties to Votto or the Reds, and a year ago when he was said to be in the same class as my beloved Adrian Gonzalez, I thought it was a vast overstatement. With not only his repeat, but his improved year, I no longer feel that way.

The Reds willingness to give him this contract should show you highly they think of him. This should prove to be a quick reminder to the teams with young stud bats, Braves, Giants immediately come to mind, that when it comes to studs, it’s better to sign them long-term a year early then a year late.

Where’s the damn unlike button?

okbluejays
4 years 6 months ago

lol what a joke of a post.

alxn
4 years 6 months ago

Doesn’t really make sense for the Reds. I can’t imagine Votto getting much more than this if he would have gone to arbitration 3 times.

Brad426
4 years 6 months ago

Yeah, I agree. Maybe just a show of good faith so they can lock him up long term? But yeah, on its face it seems odd from the team perspective.

sigfraud
4 years 6 months ago

I completely agree. This locks in something like the highest three-year haul for a pre-FA player ever (someone may have exceeded $38M – I haven’t researched it exhaustively). I know the Reds want certainty so they can get involved in the FA market early, but what if his vertigo issues come back or something else? This costs them millions.

flipbits
4 years 6 months ago

ummm, ryan howard, $44M for 3 years pre-FA. Read the article. It says it right there

flipbits
4 years 6 months ago

ummm, ryan howard, $44M for 3 years pre-FA. Read the article. It says it right there

sigfraud
4 years 6 months ago

Ah yes… That wasn’t part of the article when I posted.

sigfraud
4 years 6 months ago

Ah yes… That wasn’t part of the article when I posted.

flipbits
4 years 6 months ago

ummm, ryan howard, $44M for 3 years pre-FA. Read the article. It says it right there

sigfraud
4 years 6 months ago

I completely agree. This locks in something like the highest three-year haul for a pre-FA player ever (someone may have exceeded $38M – I haven’t researched it exhaustively). I know the Reds want certainty so they can get involved in the FA market early, but what if his vertigo issues come back or something else? This costs them millions.

joeybw
4 years 6 months ago

The other MVP, Hamilton would probably want more for 3 years. Then again, he would be letting go of his first year of free agency. Anyway, how much did the Reds possibly save? This is just about 13 million a year.

Ethanator99
4 years 6 months ago

Geeze that was pointless. I was hoping for at least 1 FA year

4 years 6 months ago

Clearly not all about money. The Reds are trying to build something here, and loyalty will go a long way to that. He did just win an MVP. These are the guys you make a point of treating well.

Going year to year on arb might have saved them 5-8 million bucks over three years, but there are other aspects to a solid business other than money.

Ferrariman
4 years 6 months ago

i see what your trying to get at, but if it was about loyalty, why wouldn’t they (or votto) go further than the years that they are already sort of forced to be with eachother(barring trade). It doesn’t buy out any extra service time so i guess i’m missing the loyalty aspect.

timmytwoshoezzz
4 years 6 months ago

Building loyalty in that, when it is time to renegotiate an extension or try to sign him as a FA, Votto understands that the team has tried to treat him well and values his service to the organization and the community.

Joe L
4 years 6 months ago

as said below me, it could just be a show of good faith by both the Reds and Votto. This could save them dollars down the line (potentially a “home-town” discount when FA rolls around), or simply save them the best chance to re-sign him should he reach FA. They can also approach him the off-season before his walk-year about an extension and having Votto realize they gave him more than they needed to in his last three arbitration years, he might be more open to a long-term extension. Like Chuck said above me, there’s most likely more to it.

Joe L
4 years 6 months ago

as said below me, it could just be a show of good faith by both the Reds and Votto. This could save them dollars down the line (potentially a “home-town” discount when FA rolls around), or simply save them the best chance to re-sign him should he reach FA. They can also approach him the off-season before his walk-year about an extension and having Votto realize they gave him more than they needed to in his last three arbitration years, he might be more open to a long-term extension. Like Chuck said above me, there’s most likely more to it.

4 years 6 months ago

Clearly not all about money. The Reds are trying to build something here, and loyalty will go a long way to that. He did just win an MVP. These are the guys you make a point of treating well.

Going year to year on arb might have saved them 5-8 million bucks over three years, but there are other aspects to a solid business other than money.

4 years 6 months ago

Clearly not all about money. The Reds are trying to build something here, and loyalty will go a long way to that. He did just win an MVP. These are the guys you make a point of treating well.

Going year to year on arb might have saved them 5-8 million bucks over three years, but there are other aspects to a solid business other than money.

Guest
4 years 6 months ago

man, Votto would look good in a Jays uniform! One can only dream.

Joe L
4 years 6 months ago

With numbers like his I’d say he’d look good in just about any uniform in the MLB.

Guest
4 years 6 months ago

man, Votto would look good in a Jays uniform! One can only dream.

schellis
4 years 6 months ago

Horrible deal for the Reds. Votto likely would have gotten around this amount going year to year, unless his performance continues to trend upward.

The Reds already controlled him for these three years, and if he were to have a off year they would have had some protection. Votto gets his security and gives up nothing to the REds to get it. Win win for Votto
Vo

Sniderlover
4 years 6 months ago

If Votto has years similar to what he had last year then he would likely get more through arbitration.

But, I think it would have been better for the Reds to go year by year unless Votto wanted to sign an extension that would buyout a few of his FA years because right now, I don’t see the point of buying out his arbitration years unless they want to save time and nother going through this process over and over again.

Sniderlover
4 years 6 months ago

If Votto has years similar to what he had last year then he would likely get more through arbitration.

But, I think it would have been better for the Reds to go year by year unless Votto wanted to sign an extension that would buyout a few of his FA years because right now, I don’t see the point of buying out his arbitration years unless they want to save time and nother going through this process over and over again.

schellis
4 years 6 months ago

Horrible deal for the Reds. Votto likely would have gotten around this amount going year to year, unless his performance continues to trend upward.

The Reds already controlled him for these three years, and if he were to have a off year they would have had some protection. Votto gets his security and gives up nothing to the REds to get it. Win win for Votto
Vo

schellis
4 years 6 months ago

Horrible deal for the Reds. Votto likely would have gotten around this amount going year to year, unless his performance continues to trend upward.

The Reds already controlled him for these three years, and if he were to have a off year they would have had some protection. Votto gets his security and gives up nothing to the REds to get it. Win win for Votto
Vo

vonhayesdays
4 years 6 months ago

Although, by giving him money now instead of dragging him through 3 years of arbitration, maybe he becomes friends with front office and decides to comeback to the reds for less money , then lets say the dodgers offer him, just a thought , however we all know money talks, but as far the deal goes aubrey huff got 11 mil per year so they didnt overpay for votto even though he was arbitration eligible.

Amish_willy
4 years 6 months ago

Considering the dollar figure associated with this deal I think you can safely rule out any future discounts. Lozano did much better financially for Votto then Boras did for Teixeira and Fielder at the same respective points in their careers. Hate this deal for future contracts in the game, bad precedent. Ryan Howard should have been left the exception. The kind of money associated with becoming the fastest player in the history of the game to hit 100 hr’s.

You can’t compare pre free agent years from one player to free agent years to another. It just doesn’t work that way. Votto new deal pays him less annually then he would have if he were a free agent right now, but that’s a moot point.

For comparisson Hanley Ramirez extension signed 4 1/2 baseball months earlier then Votto’s deal got him 23m for his arbitration years and then three free agent years at around 15m a piece. The differences between the two deals from the team & player’s standpoint is mind boggling.

I like Jockety less today then I did yesterday. Bet a whole lot of GM’s are cringing right now with this deal announced.

Joe L
4 years 6 months ago

So Howard should get more because he can slug more HR’s, even though he’s actually worth less than Votto?

vonhayesdays
4 years 6 months ago

Although, by giving him money now instead of dragging him through 3 years of arbitration, maybe he becomes friends with front office and decides to comeback to the reds for less money , then lets say the dodgers offer him, just a thought , however we all know money talks, but as far the deal goes aubrey huff got 11 mil per year so they didnt overpay for votto even though he was arbitration eligible.

vonhayesdays
4 years 6 months ago

Although, by giving him money now instead of dragging him through 3 years of arbitration, maybe he becomes friends with front office and decides to comeback to the reds for less money , then lets say the dodgers offer him, just a thought , however we all know money talks, but as far the deal goes aubrey huff got 11 mil per year so they didnt overpay for votto even though he was arbitration eligible.

schellis
4 years 6 months ago

Also what is with the football talk. This is a year round baseball site. If not for Farve football wouldn’t have any rumors.

vonhayesdays
4 years 6 months ago

Playoffs ? its not october

vonhayesdays
4 years 6 months ago

Playoffs ? its not october

vonhayesdays
4 years 6 months ago

Playoffs ? its not october

4 years 6 months ago

The rule of thumb is that a player gets, in his first year of arb, 40% of what he’d get as a FA. Year two, it goes to 60%. Year 3, 80%. In total, it’s 1.8x what he’d get in one year as a free agent (of course, spread over three years).

At $38MM, the Reds are putting his FA value at $21.1MM, which is a little less than what Mark Teixiera got ($22.5MM annually). So the Reds are giving him pretty close to the upper bound of what’s fair, and they’re buying a ton of risk (injury risk mostly) in doing so. The Reds could have just gone to arb and come out similarly.

But really, we’re not talking about a big gap here. A more reasonable price would have been $33MM over 3 years, which assumes a FA salary of $18.33MM. For the extra $1.5/year the Reds are paying, there’s no need to hyper-analyze.

Guest
4 years 6 months ago

Very interesting take. And I tend to agree with you. Sure, there’s risk involved — just as there is with any multi-year agreement. And sure, they might be paying more than they absolutely needed to. But I see no reason to think this was a huge mistake on the part of Cincinnati.

4 years 6 months ago

The rule of thumb is that a player gets, in his first year of arb, 40% of what he’d get as a FA. Year two, it goes to 60%. Year 3, 80%. In total, it’s 1.8x what he’d get in one year as a free agent (of course, spread over three years).

At $38MM, the Reds are putting his FA value at $21.1MM, which is a little less than what Mark Teixiera got ($22.5MM annually). So the Reds are giving him pretty close to the upper bound of what’s fair, and they’re buying a ton of risk (injury risk mostly) in doing so. The Reds could have just gone to arb and come out similarly.

But really, we’re not talking about a big gap here. A more reasonable price would have been $33MM over 3 years, which assumes a FA salary of $18.33MM. For the extra $1.5/year the Reds are paying, there’s no need to hyper-analyze.