Average Free Agent Prices By Position

131 free agents signed Major League deals this offseason, ranging from Scott Olsen at $550K to Carl Crawford at $142MM.  The group was guaranteed just over $1.3 billion for 203 contract years, for an average of $6.4MM per year.  The average player scored a contract worth $9.93MM.  These numbers do not include Ted Lilly, Brandon Inge, Tsuyoshi Nishioka, Frank Francisco, Jason Frasor, who were not signed on the open market.

  • Right field: $10.975MM per year ($153.65MM over 14 years).  This group includes seven players, with Jayson Werth pulling up the numbers.
  • Closer: $10MM per year ($40MM over four years).  I've included only Mariano Rivera and J.J. Putz here, as the other relievers were not signed as certain closers.
  • Left field: $9.775MM per year ($156.4MM over 16 years).  This group of ten is greatly skewed by Carl Crawford.
  • Third base: $9.4MM per year ($103.45MM over 11 years).  Adrian Beltre makes up almost all of this.
  • Designated hitter: $9.16MM per year ($128.25MM over 14 years).  Adam Dunn and Victor Martinez were compensated abnormally well for players who will mostly be serving at DH.
  • Shortstop: $8.19MM per year ($73.75MM over 9 years).  Derek Jeter is the headliner.
  • Starting pitcher: $7.42MM per year ($229.975MM over 31 years).  Cliff Lee leads the group of 22 pitchers I designated as starters.  Aside from him, starters were paid $4.2MM per year.
  • First base: $7.38MM per year ($110.65MM over 15 years).  Paul Konerko leads.
  • Second base: $4.84MM per year ($38.75MM over 8 years).  Juan Uribe received the biggest deal.
  • Right-handed reliever: $3.66MM per year ($146.28MM over 40 years).  Rafael Soriano tops the chart.
  • Left-handed reliever: $3.06MM per year ($58.05MM over 19 years).  Scott Downs got the biggest deal.
  • Catcher: $3.04MM per year ($57.675MM over 19 years).  John Buck's surprising deal tops the list.
  • Center field: $1.14MM per year ($3.425MM over 3 years).  Center fielders were tough to come by this winter, as Rick Ankiel, Melky Cabrera, and Tony Gwynn Jr. make up this group.
  • Click here to download a spreadsheet with all the data.


Full Story | 13 Comments | Categories: Uncategorized

13 Responses to Average Free Agent Prices By Position Leave a Reply

  1. The regular season can not start fast enough.

  2. MB923 4 years ago

    Ridiculous how closers got more than SP. Although has he said only 2 are up there, but still. That’s a hell of a lot of dough for a 1-2 inning pitcher.

    • PostMoBills 4 years ago

      No kidding. MLB’s obsession with saves makes my head want to explode. Who cares how many runs you give up in the first 8 innings, as long as you have a better-than-usual chance of preserving a lead in the 9th, right?

    • Threat_Level_RedSox 4 years ago

      Considering it only has two players and one is Rivera it’s not so surprising.

  3. Redbirds16 4 years ago

    A few outliers (the elite FA) really skew these numbers…

  4. Bernaldo 4 years ago

    I think the median average rather than the mean average might be a more useful measure.

  5. Threat_Level_RedSox 4 years ago

    Soriano’s deal with the yank’s proves your point, take the 72 saves out and he would of had a hard time getting 7 mil.

    • MB923 4 years ago

      True, although Benoit is making $5.5 million and has a grand total of 2 saves since 2008

  6. Michel Romang 4 years ago

    Jose Bautista’s also not included, right?

  7. Soriano’s RH-RP contract skewed the numbers north but Kerry Wood’s $1.5M low ball signing brought it back down

  8. nhsox 4 years ago

    Are the salary-per-year numbers means? Medians are usually more indicative of an ordinary salary because high annual salaries can really skew averages.

  9. lefty177 4 years ago

    talk about the year of the pitcher, no other position besides starting pitcher and right-handed reliever got over 20 years, while those 2 got 31 and 40 respectively

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