Poll: Recent Rockies Extensions

The Rockies have locked up Troy Tulowitzki through 2020 and they've agreed to a deal that should keep Carlos Gonzalez in Denver through 2017. Both are powerful young hitters capable of playing premium defensive positions at a high level, so any team would want them.

Tulowitzki, 26, finished fifth in MVP voting in 2009 and 2010. He plays Gold Glove defense and has an electrifying bat capable of carrying a team (remember those 15 September home runs?). Gonzalez, also a Gold Glove winner, is just 25. He won a batting title last year and hit 34 home runs. Few teams have two elite young players like Tulo and CarGo, so it's not surprising that GM Dan O'Dowd wanted to keep them around.

But the Rockies didn't have to offer Tulowitzki and Gonzalez massive extensions to keep the players in Colorado. They were both under team control through 2014 before they agreed to extensions. You could argue that the Rockies took on unnecessary risk with their recent deals. It begs the question…


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38 Comments on "Poll: Recent Rockies Extensions"


Gumby65
4 years 7 months ago

Good work, brings back memories of John Hart in the mid-Nineties with the Indians.

mondogarage
4 years 7 months ago

Dan O’Dowd worked under John Hart in the in 90s.

Slopeboy
4 years 7 months ago

I did say ‘slight’ improvement. Given that Gonzales is entering his prime years and is young and has improved every year he’s played, it’s not unreasonable to think it’s possible. One or two more homers, a few more SB’s a slightly higher OPS, or one or two less errors or a few more aasits or PO’s, on the defensive side. All these little additions would be a ‘slight’ improvement, and wouldn’t be something out of this world would it?
I’m sure the Rockies didn’t give him the extension with the hope that he remains where he is currently. No team gives an extension to a young player with the expectations of keeping the status quo, they’re banking that he’s gong to get better.

TwinsVet
4 years 7 months ago

I think if he can simply repeat what he did last year for the next 7, the Rockies will be absolutely thrilled, and the deal will look like a bargain.

jaredean
4 years 7 months ago

one or two less errors would put him at 0 and -1 errors on the season based on his one error last season :-)

HerbertAnchovy
4 years 7 months ago

The Cargo deal seems risky to me after one breakout year. I think they would’ve been better to assess the situation mid-season or next off-season before dishing out that kind of cash.

That being said, I really like him as a player, thought he had a lot of potential when he was with The A’s and hope he can live up to this deal.

jaredean
4 years 7 months ago

i hear that so much from people, that you have to wait to see what kind of player he is – but i trust these guys that have watched him through the system over the years. They know he was top prospect, he was involved in 2 very high profile trades (holliday and harren) where he was the main barganing chip – so if these teams are saying, “this kid is elite and i’m using him to trade in these big deals” then that says something over the years – you dealt with that in Oakland and i guarantee you guys would take him back in a red hot minute, at least that is what i sense from A’s fans who are familar with him…yes, a lot of money – but if he does have the potential to get close to what he did last season and flashes of it his rookie year then it is a dream deal for the team and him…i would be willing to put my money on him and tulo, spending a little extra to be sure, if i had the checkbook. And i LOVE that they locked them up early so when they do “bust it open” we don’t have to worry about FA for a while…

myname_989
4 years 7 months ago

I think they could have waited to extend both of these guys. I don’t understand the rush to get a deal done right away, especially for Gonzalez, who still has a pre-arbitration year left. His home / road splits are a little worrisome in my opinion. In his first full season, his OPS at home was an incredible 1.161, and his OPS on the road was .775. That’s a pretty drastic split. I would have let him play out 2011 and see if that gap shrinks any. He also had a .391 BABIP on the road, so his home numbers may come down a bit as well, and he needs to work on his ability to hit the breaking ball. Carlos Gonzalez is going to be an incredible talent, but he’s not a guarantee in my opinion. I wouldn’t have extended him so soon, or for so long, for that matter.

jaredean
4 years 7 months ago

But lets say he does work on those things, his road record gets better this season and he does turn out to be all Colorado is banking on – then do you think we can sign him for what we are today? Or do you think it goes up or we miss our window? I think the team is looking at the raw talent and knowing that, yes there is room for improvment – but WOW, what a year and he still has so much room to improve…

ps – i hate the Phils :-)

myname_989
4 years 7 months ago

I think he’s a great player, and I kind of think people are missing the point I was making. Look at it this way — Back in 2007, when Jeff Francouer played in every game and posted a .293 / .338 / .444 slash line with the Braves, to go along with 19 home runs (after hitting 29 the year prior) and playing one of the best right fields around, they could have offered him a pretty hefty extension to keep him in Atlanta. Instead, they played his arbitration years by the book, and when he tanked in 2008, they weren’t on the hook for a ridiculous contract based off of two good seasons when he was young.

I’m not saying that the deal shouldn’t have been made as much as I’m saying it shouldn’t have been made so soon. He’s shown all the signs of coming back to earth in 2011 — extremely high BABIP, ridiculous home / road splits — and he may not be worth what they’ll be paying him in his free agent years in the future. That’s the point I’m making.

You can say that he MAY improve his road record (which seems like a challenge…) and he MAY improve his ability to hit breaking balls, but I wouldn’t bet $80 million on a probability if I was the Rockies. I’d rather pay more in the future for something that’s proven, then pay a ridiculous amount because I jumped the gun in the past, and it’s not like the Rockies couldn’t do something like that.

And P.S. – I could care less. Lol

guest_54
4 years 6 months ago

I liked your comment for the sole purpose of the p.s. statement :-)

mondogarage
4 years 7 months ago

By waiting, the Rockies would have had to pay CarGo what the Phillies are paying Ryan Howard….

He does need to work on his pitch recognition of pitches breaking down and away.

myname_989
4 years 7 months ago

I think we can all agree that Howard is overpaid, so that’s probably false. Even then, took Howard through arbitration and could have offered him an extension at market value, which he probably would have accepted anyway, and come up with similar results to the CarGo deal. The difference is that the Phillies knew what they were paying for (before offering that ridiculous extension, which I also hate. Lol)

myname_989
4 years 7 months ago

I think we can all agree that Howard is overpaid, so that’s probably false. Even then, took Howard through arbitration and could have offered him an extension at market value, which he probably would have accepted anyway, and come up with similar results to the CarGo deal. The difference is that the Phillies knew what they were paying for (before offering that ridiculous extension, which I also hate. Lol)

ld303
4 years 7 months ago

I don’t mean to jump all over you with this comment- it’s really directed at the twenty or so comments I’ve seen wondering why they did the CarGo extension now. “But he’s still years away from free agency!” That’s right. And every year you wait to extend him is a year during which the extension gets much more expensive. I agree that they could have waited on Tulo; he wanted to stay a Rockie his whole life anyways so there wasn’t really a ticking clock attached to his negotiating window. But if Cargo’s 2011 is reasonably close to his 2010-not necessarily as good, but somewhere in the neighborhood- there’s no way they can extend him through 2017 for under $100 MM. They might not be able to extend him at all. Another year of Boras telling him “just wait until free agency, look at how it worked out for Matt Holliday…” might have been enough to prevent him from signing anything at all. When you take a risk, you get a reward. The CarGo extension is risky, but it’s also a bargain in terms of dollar amount unless he regresses a lot.

myname_989
4 years 7 months ago

I agree, and that’s the point I was making. It could be a bargain, but it could also be a complete albatross in the latter half of the deal, when the Rockies are going to be paying him close to $20 million for his first few free agent years. His home / road splits and high BABIP don’t warrant this type of extension after just one great season. They could have easily bought out his arbitration years (like the Phillies did with Cole Hamels), but offering him this large of an extension before he is even eligible for arbitration… Like you said, it’s a huge risk. Could be an unnecessary risk as well.

myname_989
4 years 7 months ago

I agree, and that’s the point I was making. It could be a bargain, but it could also be a complete albatross in the latter half of the deal, when the Rockies are going to be paying him close to $20 million for his first few free agent years. His home / road splits and high BABIP don’t warrant this type of extension after just one great season. They could have easily bought out his arbitration years (like the Phillies did with Cole Hamels), but offering him this large of an extension before he is even eligible for arbitration… Like you said, it’s a huge risk. Could be an unnecessary risk as well.

4 years 7 months ago

I think teams now a days have to really think about pitching first, i really dont understand why the Rockies were in a rush to lock this guy down, sure he had a terrific year in a little league size ball park with high altitude, thin air and the “juiced balls” but gives this guy another year to prove that he can put up big numbers again.

mondogarage
4 years 7 months ago

What’s wrong with the Rockies pitching? Seriously. Their overall pitching staff led the NL in WAR each of the last two seasons.

Everyone keeps saying “but what about the pitching”, and yet no one can actually point to a weakness with the Rockies pitching, other than “well, they’re not the Phils or Giants”. Well, there’s 28 other teams in the majors whose staffs aren’t the Phils or Giants, either, and the Rockies’ pitching the last two years has been better than almost all of those other 28.

theoldgrizzlybear
4 years 7 months ago

Little league-sized ballpark? You do know it has the largest outfield in baseball right?

jaredean
4 years 7 months ago

CarGo is a Boras client, so you never know – all i’ve read is “Boras clients never do this, etc.” but if you have a player that really wants to stay with a team (tulo, De La Rosa, cargo) they can make things happen…CarGo would be crazy to say no to this because it is a grip of cash for a player so young and with little major league experience, but then again the team does get some intangables from it – good will from the fans, which translates to more ticket/merchandise sales. Not to mention the rest of the players see the team takes care of them when they do well and that hopefully will motivate them…plus, bringing on FA’s to a team with such a strong core will make it easier to get noticed during Hot Stove time, etc. etc. etc…

The_Silver_Stacker
4 years 7 months ago

Of course there will be risk with any long term commitments of any sort, but CarGo extension is quite similar to when Tampa took a roll of the dice and locked up Longoria and that is paying of handsomely for the Rays. I do think CarGo will look like a steal in a couple of years.

TwinsVet
4 years 7 months ago

I find it hard to say a guy making $12M could ever really be a “steal”. But there’s no doubt that he could likely go for $15-18M on the open market at some point, so it’s certainly a “good contract”. Just won’t ever be a total bargain.

theoldgrizzlybear
4 years 7 months ago

Tulo is a much better defensive player that Hanley Ramirez, so I’m not sure where you’re going with “not accepting any arguments.”

thegrayrace
4 years 7 months ago

The Carlos Gonzalez extension seems a little premature to me… I would’ve waited another year. After his ridiculous 2010 season, his value is through the roof right now. Not the best negotiating position for the Rockies. Chances are his numbers won’t be quite as good in 2011, so why not wait until next off-season? He’s at league minimum for this season regardless, right?

mondogarage
4 years 7 months ago

Even with the extension, he’ll be nearish to league minimum this season (though there’s a $3.5m signing bonus that’s part of the 7/80).

Here’s the thing about the “premature” nature of it. If 2011 does somehow duplicate 2010, that makes two things happen. First, there’s no way that 7/80 gets it done at all, and second (and more importantly), there is no way that the Rockies get to buy out any FA years, and at best, are in the same spot they were with Holliday after 2007.

In fact, Matt Holliday is arguably a major reason why this contract came about. Because after 2007, Holliday refused to sign any deal that went beyond his arbitration years, even after the Rockies offered $21m a year. Both are Boras clients.

mattevilspawn
4 years 7 months ago

Ditto, David. I was about to type essentially the same response. Yeah, there’s a chance CarGo doesn’t exceed his 2010 numbers. But if he even comes close or in the off-chance he does, then WTF. The Rox are behind the 8-ball. I’m completely okay with the Rox locking up a position player “prematurely” when said player is uber-athletic and has future superstar written all over him.

mattevilspawn
4 years 7 months ago

Ditto, David. I was about to type essentially the same response. Yeah, there’s a chance CarGo doesn’t exceed his 2010 numbers. But if he even comes close or in the off-chance he does, then WTF. The Rox are behind the 8-ball. I’m completely okay with the Rox locking up a position player “prematurely” when said player is uber-athletic and has future superstar written all over him.

mattevilspawn
4 years 7 months ago

Risk is attached to any long-term deal. But if the Rox are going to take a risk w/long-term deals, Tulo and CarGo are great players to lock up. I like the CarGo deal a little better due to his athleticism and his position being less of an injury hazard. I’d like to see the Rox eventually move Tulo out of the DP warzone at SS to protect their investment. Eventually. Maybe 3B. He certainly has the arm for it.

mattevilspawn
4 years 7 months ago

BTW – I have a completely separate take on multi-year deals for pitchers, tho. De La Rosa deal? Different story. But I digress… 😉

4 years 7 months ago

First time poster here, so forgive my lack of statistics-based insight.
As a hometown Rockies fan, I have to argue the point of loyalty and home-grown talent. It’s become sort of a fan expectation to see the relative same bunch of guys playing together every season. I could be blinded by fan-dism, but I don’t see many clubs trying to keep their guys around for the better parts of their careers. Do I like when the Rockies do well and go to the playoffs? Sure. But I like even better going to the ballpark year after year, seeing the same guys play that I saw five years ago.

I think the Rockies are trying to find a balance between this fan-based familiarity and building a truly competitive team.

Infield Fly
4 years 7 months ago

Dude! ALL sincere baseball fans are welcome here, so don’t let the presence of some stats geeks convince you otherwise. We got some of everything…but watch for trolls…

jaredean
4 years 6 months ago

Well said Brady – being a diehard Rockies fan i am completely and utterly ecstatic with these 2 deals we’ve made because of the nature of the team itself. First off, the team has really worked hard to pick up players that don’t come with baggage (like Milton Bradley) and are really good to play with personality wise to go with talent…it is obvious they have succeeded in getting a good feel at 20th and Blake, because of the players that are either saying they don’t want to go or signing for less than they can make elsewhere (the DLR), or just plain saying it (almost every player has said they love playing there)…we, as fans, can feel that as well and when players like Tulo decide they want to be long time Rockies, possibly career Rockies, then that says a ton. We want them to WANT to stay around and going to the park to see the same bunch of guys having fun playing the game and winning more than losing (at least in the last few seasons that is) then that is what pry’s money from my pocket and loyalty from my bones.

RedSoxDynasty
4 years 7 months ago

they grossly overpaid on GONZALEZ! He pretty much has to put up similar seasons for the next seven years to justify this! If he is a flash in the pan then this contract, paying out 60 million over the last 3 years, will make Heltons deal look like a bargain!

Encarnacion's Parrot
4 years 7 months ago

Soooo.. 6.0 WAR isn’t worth a $11.429mil AAV? I’m not trying to defend the contract, I actually think they offered him an extension a year too soon, but the $20mil/per isn’t really that bad since it’s only 3 years.

FrankTheFunkasaurusRex
4 years 7 months ago

you mean rox?

ld303
4 years 7 months ago

Yeah, it’s too bad you’re not accepting any arguments that Tulo is a better all-around player than Hanley. That means you’re only hearing incorrect arguments. Hanley isn’t even among the 3 best defensive shortstops in his own division- Tulo is one of the 3 best in baseball. His advantage over Tulo with the bat doesn’t come close to making up for that gap in defensive value.

4 years 6 months ago

First of all, I had the wonderful pleasure of watching Hanley grow up as a player. I have a house in Miami, watched him in Portland, etc. So I’m sure I got a little extra love for the guy! But when it comes down to it, he’s a more complete player. Speed, similar power in a better pitchers park, the ability to hit anywhere from 1-3.

I don’t like UZR on guys like Hanley because it takes away from a lot of the intangibles (such as laziness in Hanley’s case). One year ago, if I had suggested Robinson Cano was going to win the Gold Glove at 2B in 2010, you would have said the same thing. However, I did in fact predict that Cano, once he decided to stop being lazy and give defense a real shot, would win at least one Gold Glove before it was all said and done.

But even if you are a fan of UZR, Hanleys defense has fluctuated drastically, and the funniest part of the whole thing is, he’s actually average when he’s clearly not trying. If you see the Marlins make another playoff push (which probably won’t happen in 2011 sadly) watch for Hanley’s defense to pick up and watch him become the defender he is capable of. He reminds me in many ways of Zack Grienke. He shows up when he feels like it and has a shot at winning.