Jose Bautista’s Arbitration Case

This piece was first published on MLBTR on October 13th, 2010.

Arbitration Expert Breaks Down Bautista’s Value With MLBTR

A glance at the all-time single season home run leaders tells you all you need to know about Jose Bautista’s 2010 campaign. Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa, Roger Maris, Babe Ruth, Jimmie Foxx, Hank Greenberg, Ryan Howard, Luis Gonzalez, Alex Rodriguez, Ken Griffey Jr. and Hack Wilson are the only players who have ever hit more home runs in a season. 

Needless to say, Bautista is due for a raise. 

Bautista, who heads to arbitration for the fourth and final time this offseason, earned $2.4MM last year, and will make far more in 2011. It’s a question of how much more and the answer isn’t easy to determine. 

The problem is, few careers resemble Bautista’s. He played for four teams in 2004, played five positions in 2006 and seemed destined for a career as a utility man when the Blue Jays acquired him in 2008. And in 2010? He made the All-Star team and led the major leagues in extra base hits and home runs.

If your head is spinning, imagine how arbitrators – the decision-makers responsible for settling salary disagreements between teams and players –  would feel after considering Bautista’s case for a few hours. The Blue Jays have a history of avoiding arbitration, so there seems to be a good chance that they don’t go to a hearing this time, but the potential for one will shape the sides’ discussions.

The Blue Jays can argue that Bautista deserves a limited raise, but they have to be careful, according to one longtime arbitration consultant.

“You lose a lot of credibility with an arbitrator if you have a guy who had a monster year and you start pissing all over him,” says Michael Vlessides, who has faced most leading baseball agents on behalf of various MLB teams over the course of the past two decades.

In other words, Bautista has a strong case, and there’s not much the Blue Jays can do about it. But they can keep his salary in check and they could decide to offer him a multi-year deal, even though Bautista is coming off a remarkable season. 

Bautista’s Case: The Historic Season

Bautista’s representatives will likely argue that his season was historic, not just productive. He set the Blue Jays record for home runs in a season (54) and also ranks among the organization’s all-time single season leaders in slugging percentage (2nd with .617), total bases (5th with 351), RBI  (5th with 124) and walks (7th with 100).

Bautista just hit more home runs than Albert Pujols or Adam Dunn has ever hit in a season. More home runs than Jim Thome or Manny Ramirez ever hit. Among active players, only Alex Rodriguez, Ryan Howard and David Ortiz have matched Bautista’s 54 home runs, so he has joined some select company.

Under different circumstances, players like Jorge Cantu and Adam LaRoche could have been comparables for Bautista. Both entered their final arbitration season with similar career numbers to the ones Bautista now has, but Cantu and LaRoche weren’t coming off of such impressive seasons.

Last offseason, Cantu received a raise from $3.5MM to $6MM. It’s a substantial bump, but Bautista appears to be headed for more.

“Really that’s not the starting point for Bautista,” Vlessides said. “He had 54 home runs and as esoteric as baseball analysis has become over the years, arbitration remains a fairly simplistic process… We don’t talk about win shares or anything along those lines. So 54 home runs and 124 RBI is pretty sexy and this guy is not going at $6MM.”

LaRoche beat $6MM a couple winters ago. He agreed to a $7.05MM salary (up from $5MM) when he headed into his final arbitration year, but he had come off of a 25 homer-85 RBI season. Bautista’s representatives can argue that $7MM wouldn’t be enough for a player who had just had a historically productive season and hit twice as many homers as LaRoche did.

Bautista’s agents can compare him to a player on a much sexier career path than Cantu or LaRoche. Bautista has not produced as much as Mark Teixeira had at this stage of his career, but the Yankee first baseman could be a point of reference for Bautista.

Teixeira’s salary jumped from $9MM to $12.5MM after the 2007 season,  a year in which he had fewer homers, doubles, RBI, runs and walks than Bautista had this past season. Vlessides says Bautista’s representatives can use Tex as a comparable to show that Bautista had a better platform year, even if they admit that their client doesn’t deserve the $12.5MM salary Teixeira obtained.

The Blue Jays can gently point to apparent flaws in Bautista’s game such as strikeouts and his low batting average. But it’s hard to take issue with Bautista’s offense and he has more than his bat going for him. He plays right field and third base, is just 30 years old and has been healthy throughout his career. What’s more, he’s a respected clubhouse presence who helped welcome Yunel Escobar when the Blue Jays acquired him last summer.

Bautista’s side can argue that he has adjusted, learned and evolved into a completely different player from the man who had never hit more than 16 home runs before 2010. It’s a subjective argument and arbitrators won’t necessarily buy it, but it’s not unprecedented for players to find themselves during their late twenties. Arbitration panels sometimes listen when players pull at their heartstrings, Vlessides said.

Even if they just stick to the numbers, Bautista’s representatives can argue that he deserves a big raise based on comparable players and his place in history. Assuming Bautista doesn’t win the MVP award and assuming that his representatives don’t ‘reach’ for an unexpectedly high salary, Vlessides predicts a bid of roughly $10-11MM from Bautista’s agency (which declined to comment for this story).

The Blue Jays’ Case: The Pedestrian Career

The Blue Jays cannot and will not ignore Bautista’s massive 2010 season, but the team can point to his earlier mediocre production and argue that he hasn’t earned an eight-figure salary. Unlike Teixeira, LaRoche and Cantu at comparable points in their careers, Bautista has had just one standout season. That would gives the Blue Jays a certain amount of leverage in a hearing.

“What they would do is when they compare him to other players, they’ll say ‘these guys all had good seasons, but their career contributions dwarf that of Mr. Bautista and the only reason we’re talking about them in the same vein is because we recognize that he had a better platform year,” Vlessides said.

The Blue Jays can point to the raises others received and note that Bautista would earn less than $6MM with a comparable jump. However, Bautista’s representatives can argue that he deserves a bigger boost than others. 

“A smart agent will look at the raise and say ‘listen, raise is irrelevant here because Mr. Bautista has been a good citizen for his club,“ Vlessides said. 

Last winter, Bautista agreed not to take a raise since he hadn’t earned one. His agency can argue that it would be unfair for the Blue Jays to penalize their star for taking no raise last winter.

Bautista put together a fantastic 2010 season, but it wasn’t perfect, something the Blue Jays may remind a panel if the sides go to arbitration. Bautista, whose violent swing has always led to high strikeout totals, whiffed 116 times in 2010 and he batted just .260, though that figure represents a new career-high. 

Keep in mind that GM Alex Anthopoulos has never gone to an arbitration hearing, either as GM or when he worked on arbitration cases under J.P. Ricciardi. The Blue Jays have successfully avoided hearings since 1997, but if they do go to arbitration, the team figures to submit an offer of $7.5-8MM, Vlessides said.

The Bottom Line

Bautista’s ‘true value’ in arbitration (not to be confused with what he’d earn as a free agent) is below $10MM and likely sits around $8-9MM, Vlessides said.

Keeping Bautista Long-Term

A long-term deal for Bautista could take on many different shapes, depending on the team's willingness to offer guaranteed money and Bautista's eagerness to capitalize on his big season. Per team policy, the Blue Jays declined to comment on the team’s interest in reaching a multi-year deal.

The first year of the deal would likely be worth $8MM or so and the following seasons could be worth $14-17MM. Beyond that, there are many variables, but Vlessides can imagine the sides agreeing on a two-year deal worth $25MM including buyouts or vesting options. 

That depends, of course, on the Blue Jays’ faith in Bautista to approach or replicate his 2010 level of production and their desire to please the fan base with a feel-good move. Don’t forget that Bautista became a fan favorite in Toronto, where crowds greeted him with ‘MVP’ chants and showered him with standing ovations.

So while Bautista hasn’t set himself up for a Ryan Howard or Alex Rodriguez-esque deal, those 54 homers seem to have ensured him an $8MM payday next season. Not bad for a guy who was supposed to be a utility player.

84 Responses to Jose Bautista’s Arbitration Case Leave a Reply

  1. The_Silver_Stacker 4 years ago

    It must really suck to be an arbitrator in his case. Bautista’s situation is unprecedented and certainly alot of pressure on these people

    • Most arbitrators would probably love the chance to set this sort of precedent.

      They get in this line of work to make decisions not follow the status quo.

      • iains 4 years ago

        The unfortunate part is the arbitrator can’t pull a number from the air. They are given choice A or choice B and whoever makes the best case for it wins. There is no room for being creative.

  2. Lunchbox45 4 years ago

    I don’t see an arbitrator awarding him more than 10 million.

    I think 8.5-9.5 is what I would guess.

    I also see the Jays avoiding arbitration and signing him to a 3/33 with a club option.

    • I think that is a great offer for him & good for the Jays as well.

    • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

      The arbitrator doesn’t decide the salary number himself. He chooses from either the teams offer or the players request. The key is for the Jays not to offer to little because the choice isn’t a compromise on a number in between but instead, the player’s request.

  3. Threat_Level_RedSox 4 years ago

    The Jays should just avoid any long term deal at the moment, im sure their are serious concerns with in the orginization that he will have a regretion. The jays can’t afford a Gary Mathews Jr. type situation with all ready haveing the Vernon Wells contract.

    • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

      any long term contract with jbau would be modest, 3/4 years. Not crippling money… His defensive versatility makes it an easier gamble, so even if he does regress, the contract won’t be huge and he will still have something to offer.

    • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

      In my opinion, its better than the alternative, taking the chance that he puts up 30-35 HR’s this season.. with how thin the FA market is these days and Jose’s ability to play multiple positions, it wouldn’t be outrageous to think he gets Beltre money from a team and the Jays lose a big piece for almost nothing

      • Threat_Level_RedSox 4 years ago

        All im saying is settle the arbitration hearing then pursue a extention with cation. A .957 feilding percentage at third base suggest he will most likely be an outfielder in years to come which greatly reduces his leverage in free agency.

        • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

          Did you see some of the contracts this year? Regardless of his fielding % (Longoria’s was .966) .. I’m not saying Jbau is a good fielding 3rd baseman, UZR would suggest below average.. but you can’t use fielding percentage to form an opinion.

          Even if he remains in the OF, if he puts up another 30 HR’s this year, he will easily get a 4-5 year deal, worth 13-16 million a year.. Jays won’t give him that kind of cash, which means they will lose him as a Type A

    • JaysFTW 4 years ago

      JBau is no where close to being in a position like Vernon Wells or Gary Mathews Jr. so that won’t be a problem at all. And the Jays would be able to afford that kind of money anyways.

  4. 8.5 million seems fair for what he did last year and the potential moving forward.

  5. I bet he signs at 3/35.

    Avoids arby and keeps the streak alive!

    • iains 4 years ago

      May avoid Arby, but get sucked into McDonalds or Wendy’s

  6. Threat_Level_RedSox 4 years ago

    The Jays strategy is going to be the most interesting part of the case. They could try and low ball him under the guidelines his season has been a admiration for but his carear statistics suggest he may be incapable for sustaning that level of performince or they could let him sumit his numbers and try to under cut him the usual $500,000-$750,00 that teams often seem to do. Any way I dont see this getting settled before the hearing.

  7. iains 4 years ago

    I’m thinking the fairest deal would be something performance based with an option year with value to be determined by the milestones.

    • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

      Yeah but you can’t base a mlb contract on HR incentives. You can have a SIDE deal that’s more of a marketing agreement like the one Arod signed though. I don’t even know if you would want to give Bautista a reason to swing for the fences.

  8. optionn 4 years ago

    I would rather have this guy than either Crawford or Werth. My best is they settle for 9 million and he gets a nice 70ish million dollar deal next offseason from the Angels.

    • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

      He’s had one great year, lets not get too excited

  9. I really thought the arbitrator could.Are you sure?

    • RahZid 4 years ago

      Yes, the arbitrator must chose one of the 2 proposed salaries. The reason we see compromises is because teams can still negotiate on their own after figures are exchanged, but before the hearing.

  10. $1545094 4 years ago

    IMO it would be terrible to give him a multi year deal. I understand that it is unlikely the Jays trade him before the season, but the Jays will likely not be a contending team this season and could end up getting more for a trade of Bautista during the season.
    I would bet my left nut that he will not repeat his 2010 numbers. even if he doesn’t come crashing back down to earth, what are the expectations for 2011? 35+ HR? really? from a guy who had a previous careeer high of 16, 16! “maybe” he can get to 30, but I would likely bet he has closer to 25. that’s not bad, but certainly not like what he did in 2010. so even if he gets around 25 HR on a 1 year contract in 2010, would he really be due for another hefty raise in 2012+? if he can put up good numbers in 2011, THEN he could show he is worth signing for multiple seasons.
    2010- 54 HR, 124 RBI, .260 AVG
    previous careeer highs- 16 HR, 63 RBI, .254 AVG

    this arbitration really shouldn’t be that hard. you can look at what he did in 2010, but then also look at what he did in each of his other seasons. this is like on Seseme Street when they have things and there is one that doesn’t belong. which season of Bautista do you think doesn;t match up with his others.

    there is no way the Jays should give him a multi year contract. make him earn it, and one season like he had in 2010 doesnt mean you have earned a long term contract. not at 30 years old.
    “IF” he comes back down to his previous level, and the Jays did sign him for multiple years.. it could criple the franchise. is that worth it?

    • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

      your post makes no sense because if he has a good 2011 then his value will skyrocket and the Jays will either have to over pay for him or have him walk for almost nothing…

      If they had another year of control then your post makes perfect sense.. but saying ‘make him earn it’ implies that the Jays will own him after this season. Which they don’t.

      • $1545094 4 years ago

        what is a good 2011? lets assume this season with arbitration he gets around $9 MIL. 2011 he has 25 HR/.255 AVG. how much more would he be able to make in a multi year contract? would a team then really pay say more than $12/$13 MIL a season? now if in 2011 he can get 35+ HR then other teams will see him as someone they could pay more money too, but after next season he will turn 31. how many years would a team want to lock him up at 31+ years old? his age is going in the wrong direction for the Jays. they should be getting younger, not signing older players. by the time a lot of the other players are in their prime Bautista will be on the decline, if he isnt already 2011+.
        why not lock him up now? because if the Jays sign him long term even for $10+ MIL a season and he returns to his previous level then the Jays are screwed. it was bad enough when the Jays had Lyle Overbay locked up for multiple seasons at $7.5 MIL and NOBODY wanted him because he was making too much money. Overbay didn’t have similar power, but he did had high OBP and a better AVG.

        • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

          The difference is Overbay played first base, and in terms of offensive figures he was near the very bottom of the barrel for first baseman. Where as Bautista is capable of playing more premium positions which puts his offensive figures up against players who may not perform as well..

          Sure, if you lock him up now and he reverts back to his 16 HR .230 avg self the deal could look like a mistake, but if its a decent 3 year contract it will never be crippling.

          The flip side,

          if you put him on a one year deal and he performs well, anywhere from 25-35 HR’s .250 avg and heads in to free agency, he will easily command a 4-5 year deal worth 13-16 million per.. I mean look what Beltre got, Crawford, Werth.. obviously Jbau doesn’t have the history of success that they do, but he would have 2 seasons in which he hit 80-90 HR’s combined, and be very useful defensively. He’ll get that contract and the Jays would have let him walk for nothing, especially if the team that signs him has a 1st round protected pick.

          • The_Silver_Stacker 4 years ago

            It seems his career is taking the same path that Werth’s as a late bloomer. Imagine if he puts up similar number the next few years and than hits the open market and see what he can get, could be scary numbers.

          • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

            I agree. As ridiculous as it sounds, he could land a 100 million dollar contract. He just needs a few things to happen

            A) hit atleast 35-40 HR’s
            b) stay healthy
            c) Hire Scott Boras

        • ju1ced 4 years ago

          For some reason you’re using AVG in an arguement.

  11. Lunchbox45 4 years ago

    It would be really cool if arbitration happened after the season… obviously the players and union would never go for it.. but how cool would it be if you could get paid after the season is done based on your performance. It would make baseball a lot more exciting thats for sure.

    longterm, guaranteed big money contracts are the worst.

    • $1545094 4 years ago

      this is the way all contracts should work. you get paid for what you did, not get paid for what you are expected to do. all contracts should be based on incentives.
      how often are players given contracts and they can’t produce up to that level? the team is screwed having to pay that if/when the player doesn’t produce and because the player is making so much money they can’t even trade him.
      Gary Matthews, Eric Byrnes, ect

  12. Red_Line_9 4 years ago

    What an amazing find for the Jays. Who’d of thought Bautista would cause this kind of intrigue. It’s like finding junk that turns into gold. Maybe they’ll flip him for something?

  13. Cabber23 4 years ago

    I think the Jays would be smart to offer 3 yrs @ $29 Mil with a club option for a 4th yr ($11mil) that could see the deal worth $40. If Bautista reverts back to a guy with 25-30 HRS & 90 RBI’s a year then it’s still a good value and one that can still be traded away in the future if needed. I know some of you will say, he never had a 25-30 HR season prior to 2010 which is true, but also he was never given the opportunity to come to the plate 650-700 times in a season with the exception of 2007 (532) when he was on a horrible Pirates team. Given the opprotunity to be an everyday player on a good offensive team which the Blue Jays usually are makes a world of difference. The Jays would have to pay roughly $18 Mil for a bat like that in the open market most of those guys are throw aways from other teams usually because of their age and/or don’t want to afford that much money on a guy at the end of their carear. If Jays had not given Wells that crazy deal a few yrs back they would have no problem uping the ante on this one.

  14. grownice 4 years ago

    im hoping a 3 year deal gets worked out, jays have more then enough money to risk it, i jsut really dont wanna see him walk if he puts up another 30hr + season!

    • $1545094 4 years ago

      if Bautista is producing similar in 2011 to what he did in 2010, then the Jays can trade him to a contender looking for a bat. get something for the future that can help more than if Bautista was signed longer.

      • grownice 4 years ago

        Bautista is 30, if his season wasnt a fluke, then thats 4-5 years left of good quality production , so i think 3 years is perfect…id rather him not be traded, kind of hard to match that production even if he regresses to a 25-30 hr guy in which case id still rather him then a couple prospects at the deadline, UNLESS someone overpays massively( which i doubt) and/or the jays have a horrible season( which i also doubt).

  15. If I’m Anthopolos, I’d see the handwriting on the wall. After already trading a good starter in Marcum, I’d look to trade Bautista to Los Angeles Angels or Oakland Athletics. Both of those teams missed out on the Adrain Beltre sweepstakes, and both need a 3B who can hit. Why not capitilaze on Bautista’s monster year, and let Reagins or Beane worry about what Bautista will earn post 2011.

    Afterall, Anthopolos is handcuffed by the monster contract Wells was given, and with a drastically weakened rotation and bullpen, Toronto is not expected to compete for a playoff spot residing in the AL Beast!

    • HerbertAnchovy 4 years ago

      A drastically weakened rotation? You think that Marcum’s departure makes that much difference to a team with one of the best young rotations in baseball? Guys like Romero, Cecil, Morrow, Drabek, and others can pick up the slack.

      Wells’ contract is not handcuffing the team either. Sure, he’s grossly overpaid, but it isn’t preventing them from doing anything that is viable.

      You have no idea what you’re talking about.

      • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

        I love Marcum… but if you look up his numbers vs AL east teams, you will see his deficiency..

        AA has been drafting, big, hard throwing starters for a reason. Soft tossing, change up artists always have hard times versus deep and patient batting orders.

    • “drastically weakened rotation and bullpen”

      Let’s not be too drastic. Yes the pen is a question mark but the rotation will do just fine. Second Half of 2010 Morrow? More experienced Romero and Cecil? Welcome Drabek. Welcome RZep/Stewart.

      Come to think of it, 2010 was considered a “drastically weakened rotation and bullpen” since the departure of Halladay and look how the rotation fared. No, the Jays will not likely contend but I assure you our pitchers will hold their own.

      • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

        I actually can’t envision the bullpen being worse than it was last year. Our bullpen was terrible, and of course the x factor is we actually have someone competent running it.

    • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

      What would you expect if you traded him now? I’m not opposed to it. I’m just not confident that A’s or Angels would be willing to pay for a 54 HR hitter, more likely trying to buy low on a 16 HR hitter…

      • I would think the Jays could get a top rated OF prospect, (Bryce Harper type) or a top rated pitching propsect (Hellickson type) + solid reliever. The Athletics have a surplus of pitching especially relievers, and two OF prospects (Carter and Taylor) who have little chance of playing in 2011 in light of the moves Oakland has made this offseason.

        • I just accidentally liked this instead of replying to it, and it might ruin my day.

          Nobody is going to trade a Bryce Harper type prospect for anything. At all. Ever.

          • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

            if you press like again, it will take it away. 😉

          • Sorry, I may have over-stated Bautista’s value. I was basing this on what I saw the Cubs give up to land Garza. They gave up a top pitching prospect in Chris Archer, and a top SS prospect in Lee, as well as a good OF prospect in Guyer

          • Sniderlover 4 years ago

            Bautista would be a rental.

            If Bautista is having a great then he could fetch a top prospect + decent-to-good prospect or two. It depends on the market. If there is a huge demand for a power hitter OF/3B then Jays could fetch a lot especially if he can come with an extension.

        • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

          Bryce Harper (type) for Jose Bautista??? are you insane? lol

          No team is going to move a top prospect for Bautista at this point.

  16. YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

    I guess it depends on where the Jays feel they are in their masterplan to contend. Whatever they get in return will most likely be 1 or 2 prospects that probably are a year or two or more away from contributing. If the Jays feel like they can make a run in 2012 then Bautista can be an assett.

    • I guess it falls under the old adage “buy low sell high”. There are several teams who have already committed to contending, like the Athletics, who would take Bautista in a trade and probably overpay. Everyone knows the Jays have no shot of contending in 2011 (even if the signed Jon Rauch) If Toronto avoids arbitration and pays him 8-10 MM this year and Bautista has another great year, there’s no way for Anthopolos to keep him. And since Bautista wouldn’t be a “super 2″ FA, the Jays would get nothing after 2011, if he left for greener ($$) pastures.

      • If Toronto avoids arbitration and pays him 8-10 MM this year and Bautista has another great year, there’s no way for Anthopolos to keep him

        why? He’s publicly stated that he enjoys TOR. Unless AA is lying to us about actually having money to spend (which he isn’t; Rogers is a multi-billion dollar company, the Jays make up like 3% of Rogers’ value), the Jays will put up the cash if they think it’s worth it to sign him to a multi-year deal. Seems absurd to just say “if he has a good season he’s out of TOR” since he might want to stay. I mean TOR is the only team that’s ever given him a real chance to play everyday and look what’s happened.

        • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

          while I don’t agree with buddy you responded too’s reasoning

          I do believe that if Jbau has a good year and reaches FA status he won’t be back..
          too many desperate teams who get loose with the wallets in the offseason.. Jose hasn’t made much money to date, if someone dangles a 80 Million dollar contract for 5 years he’ll leave, and I don’t see the Jays going near matching it

        • Sniderlover 4 years ago

          If he has another great season, say 40 HR then it wouldn’t be crazy to think he can demand a Werth type contract or somewhere between Werth and Bay type contract. I could see AA walking from that but I’d have to think if they don’t hammer out an extension before trade deadline then he is most likely gone.

    • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

      It really also depends on Jbau himself.. if he gets off to a luke warm start, teams at the deadline would be pretty reluctant to shed any decent prospects for him … I see the team looking for a 2013 peak.. As we saw last year at the deadline, AA won’t trade someone just to trade them, he wants quality back or he’ll leave it in the hands of his scouting department

  17. nebelski 4 years ago

    Tough case for sure. I think the arbitrators would pick Toronto if they present 8M-9M or so, but I have a hard time thinking he’s even worth 8M. I watched this guy in Pittsburgh for years and peripherally, he didn’t get much better last year despite the home runs. My faith in him would not be very high. I don’t think he’ll ever hit 30 again. Even if he does, is .250 w/ 30 HR worth that much? Is that going to help a team overcome the Sox, Yanks, and Rays? I don’t think so.

    • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

      .250 with 100 walks and 30 Hr’s is pretty damn good for RF so I don’t know what you are talking about…

      J.D Drew… .341 OBP, 22 HR
      Nick Swisher… .359 OBP 29 HR
      Ben Zobrish……..346 OBP 10 HR
      Bautista ………..378 OBP 54 HR

      Now obviously the dingers are outrageous, and the likely hood of repeating is minimal…
      but he has the ability to consistently get on base. So comparing him to other RF in the AL east and saying he he wouldn’t help the Jays is pretty preposterous.

      • Bautista can also play 3B, as well as RF or LF. When you compare him to other 3B in the league, the difference is even better.

        • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

          I stopped reading after you used fielding % . Evan Longoria’s was .966 by comparison..

          Of course both numbers mean absolutely nothing because the difference between an non routine play and an error is based on human subjectivity. Yet you used it to form an opinion about someone’s defensive ability.. good job.. guess Maddon should start pulling Longoria out for a defensive replacement

          • my point was just that he can also play 3B full-time, in addition to the OF

          • Lunchbox45 4 years ago

            but your point was also that

            know he only had a .957 fielding % last year, but for that production, I’ll use a defensive replacement in the late innings for games in hand

            Which someone who knew a thing or two about a thing or two, wouldnt have said

          • you’re right lunchbox! it was stupid of me to post that and I have deleted it.

        • I hope you don’t think I’m s***ing on all your ideas, but don’t use fielding percentage in an argument. Prince Fielder had a fielding % of like .997 last year.

          edit- my pony is slow.

          • I agree, UZR is a much better statistic to use than fielding %–my mistake. All I was trying to say was that Bautista can play 3rd base effectively as well as the OF, and is valuable for not only his power, but also his versatility. I just would hate to see Bautista leave after the 2011 season as a FA. Given the Rogers corp’s wealth, maybe it would be wise to sign him to a reasonable 3 yr extension.

  18. Motor_City_Bombshell 4 years ago

    This is an iffy case, I’d be wary to give Bautista a multi-year deal because his numbers literally came from out of nowhere. If I were the Jays, I’d give him an option between a 1-year, $7.5 million deal or a two-year, $18 million deal ($7.5 million, $10.5 million) with a $1 million buyout on the second year. I think they need to proceed with caution with this guy, because he’s certain to decline next year, maybe not catastrophically, but at least pretty significantly. I’d be surprised if he hits 40 HRs next year.

  19. rbeezy 4 years ago

    I saw Bautista live a couple times last year. He has real power, mostly all pull but he cleared the 500 level and hit half way up the wall on a foul ball about 30 ft of the foul poll at the rogers center. That is about 550 ft. Almost hit it out of the stadium. Guy has a laserbeam attached to his shoulder as well. Solid player, I have no doubt he puts up 40 HR’s this season. Jays need to lock him up.

  20. Sniderlover 4 years ago

    Unless Bautista gets locked up long-term, we will be hearing Bautista name pop up throughout the season. If he is having a solid season, say he is on pace for 35-40 homeruns, it will be very interesting what Jays will do because if they make him available, he could be a really intriguing piece.

    Personally, I would try to lock him up to a 2 year contract, something around 22-25 million with a vesting or club options. That way Jays don’t overcommitment and find themselves with a bad contract but they also get a solid player at a good price if he continues to produce similarily to what he did in 2010.

  21. ClimaClub 4 years ago

    if a player like ryan ludwick can get 6.5 mil then
    bautista should get at a min 10 mil

    8.5 mil for his arb year. 11.5 for 1 year and a team option for 14 mil
    2 yr 20 mil or 3 yr 34 mil.

    while bautista might not replicate the 54 hrs he does hhave a good eye and good power. if he is a 30 hr guy witha 340 obp and above avg defense

  22. Screw the JBau situation… get morrow locked up allready

  23. Coollet 4 years ago

    Why not keep his leadership in the clubhouse, with all the expansion to the scouting of cuba and other spanish speaking player, wouldn’t he be an asset? Plus, call me old fashion, but why not reward his loyalty (if its true that he enjoys Toronto so much).

  24. Why not give him what he wants?
    If he gets what he wants $ wise, he’ll likely play well and inspired – It’s not like he’s a primadonna like Beltre is in contract years, or Manny…

    Bautista plays hard. He deserves a raise, and if dollars and cents aren’t an issue, because of rogers deep pockets, then why do we care? It’s not like there’s a salary cap in baseball, right?

    • FrankTheFunkasaurusRex 4 years ago

      playing hard and playing well is different

    • woodrowken 4 years ago

      Easy to say, just pay him!!! That is if it’s not your money.He deserves a pay increase but I wouldn’t just throw money at him.It’s only one year that he had any kinda huge numbers.One awesome year and I hope he repeats, but let’s see what is gonna happen before millions of dollars fall from the sky for Bautista.Most people can retire happy with what he will make this season.

  25. okbluejays 4 years ago

    Heard the Bautista asked for 10.5mil, Jays countered at 7.5. I think 7.5-9mil is what he’ll probably get, and I think that’s fair for a guy that has a iffy track record and one spectacular year. I think Bautista could hit 25-35+ hr’s next year with the type of swing and power he has. Lets also remember that he has a pretty good eye and walks quite a bit, which is a huge bonus since he isn’t going to hit for average. I’d still be wary about giving him a multi-year deal especially if they can’t get him on a cheap deal (3yrs/30mil), as they don’t know exactly what they’d be getting for those 3-4 years, plus i’m not sure Bautista would be that interested in signing an extension at this point. If he feels he can put up another big year next year, he’ll be due for a big contract from someone next year, and if he does get off to a good start it might be in Toronto’s best interest to start shopping him and see what kind of package they could get in return, as i’d assume it’d be pretty for a guy with Bautista’s kind of power. This is definitely one of the most interesting arb cases, and it will be interesting not only to see how this ends but how well Bautista does next year and beyond.

  26. Offer him 8.5/10/11.5= 3yr 30mill. 3rd year is a player option… everyone’s happy

    • More like 9.5/11.5/12= 3yr 33mill. Keep the 3rd year as player option… I don’t think Bautista would be tempted enough by my original idea for an offer considering what he is asking. This slight bump gets him 2 years averaging right at his asking price, and the potential to only have one of his free agent years bought out if he is for real. The added security of having the second year of free agency bought out if he struggled might persuade him out of just going to arb and seeing what kind of a walk year he can put up. Jays might prefer to let him see what kind of a walk year he can put up too though, so maybe they will be going to arbitration after all.

  27. Coollet 4 years ago

    Can anyone tell me why Wells has such an incredible contract? What happen? Is AA or JP to blame?

  28. Coollet 4 years ago

    Can anyone tell me why Wells has such an incredible contract? What happen? Is AA or JP to blame?

  29. woodrowken 4 years ago

    Doesn’t matter win or loss arb. he is still winning the lottery!!! He is and has been a versatile player but has been avg. his entire career but one year.Let’s not forget the Jays gave him a chance that no other team was willing to give him.Anything between 6-10 million should be nothing more than a dream come true.I have to give him his props, great season last year!! I watch nearly 70 Jays games and he was lights out.Can the player do it twice or better yet for the next couple of years, us Jays fans hope so.Great locker room player was mentioned much of last year as well and that is important.

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