Yoenis Cespedes’ Asking Price

MONDAY, 10:28am: The $35-50MM estimate for Cespedes may be light, a GM tells Gammons.  Cespedes' people told one club they already have an offer with $10MM up front and eight years.

FRIDAY, 3:46pm: Cespedes may be looking to obtain more than $60MM on an eight-year deal, according to MLB.com's Joe Frisaro. The outfielder shoud be declared a free agent soon after he establishes temporary residency in the Dominican Republic in late November, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (on Twitter).

12:59pm: The question emerges whenever a star hits the free agent market: ‘how much will he cost?’ Yoenis Cespedes, the 26-year-old Cuban center fielder who is expected to hit free agency this offseason, has already drawn interest from many MLB teams and it sounds as though he expects to be paid like an established star, not a prospect. 

Cespedes' agents are positioning him as an impact MLB player, instead of comparing him to other Cubans who have made the leap to the Major Leagues, according to Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com (on Twitter). Scouts in the Dominican tell Peter Gammons of MLB Network that Cespedes will cost between $35-50MM (Twitter link).

The Cubs will watch Cespedes and others in the Dominican Republic next week, according to MLB.com’s Carrie Muskat (on Twitter). The Red Sox, Phillies, Indians, Blue Jays, Pirates, Rangers, Tigers, Nationals, Athletics, Marlins, and Yankees also appear to have some interest in Cespedes.


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139 Comments on "Yoenis Cespedes’ Asking Price"


philpbarnes
3 years 9 months ago

$30-50m? 

Yikes

3 years 9 months ago

No thanks Cuba, you can keep him.

This guy should be fortunate to have the opportunity to even play in the MLB. 50 MM with no track record? Pass

kingoriole
3 years 9 months ago

Should be fortunate to even play in the MLB? Shouldn’t every player be fortunate to have the opportunity?

Because he’s CUban? Does being Cuban mean you have to accept less from billionaires for your services?

Muggi
3 years 9 months ago

No, but it doesn’t mean you’re an MLB-level player. He’s completely unproven, and comparisons I’ve read put the quality of the Cuban pro league around high-A ball.

And yes he IS fortunate, because he’s not subject to the draft like a U.S. born player. What makes him worth 3-5 times more than top overall picks, who HAVE a track record? One thing: free agency.

3 years 9 months ago

This is a very simple equation and you can’t fault the player in the matter:  he’s worth exactly what any given team is willing to pay for his services.  

3 years 9 months ago

This. Supply and demand.

3 years 9 months ago

wait…draft picks have track records?  you’re telling me that bubba starling playing hs baseball in BFE kansas has more of a track record than Cespedes?

LordD99
3 years 9 months ago

My guess is Muggi did not so much mean “track record,” but is instead talking more that Starling is easier to project than Cespedes, who is not a known quantity.  He plays in a Cuban league that is rated to be the equivilant of low A ball in the United States.  The top talent evaluators would have heard of him, but would not have been able to scout him reguarly outside of some international tournaments. Starling was scouted heavily, game in and game out, by all MLB teams and especially the ones that thought they would be in position to draft him. Not so with Cespedes.  Basically, this guy has a YouTube video.  He is supposedly 26.  (Yeah, right, just like El Duque was supposedly 29 when the Yankees signed him.) 

This “kid” thinks he can step right in and play against MLB pitching.  He can’t.  MLB pitching will tear him to shreds.   He’s going to have to spend at least a year or more in AA and AAA before being MLB ready, something he may never be.

garfios
3 years 9 months ago

Low A ball, I’m sure you don’t know what you r talking about, just check their International track record against Major Leagues and professional teams and ask your self how a “low A ball team can have that much success against such stars, out all the Cubans (stars) that had sign with a major league team, only Kendry Morales had spent more that a year in the minor leagues and that was because Texeira was with the big club, Ramirez, El Duque, Livan, Chapman, Contreras, etc.. and most of them were old, only Ramirez, Morales, Viciedo, Chapman and now Cespedes were young enough to take a risk…

setupunchtag
3 years 9 months ago

Nobody is suggesting Starling has more of a track record than Cespedes. And Starling played baseball in suburban KC, not some small town in the middle of a prairie. No, the competition isn’t Florida, Texas, or California, but Starling DID play in some all-star games against the better amatuer talent in the US. And Starling is a prove-able 19, not 26(?), so he IS missing 7 years of track record Cespedes has…so there’s that.

setupunchtag
3 years 9 months ago

Nobody is suggesting Starling has more of a track record than Cespedes. And Starling played baseball in suburban KC, not some small town in the middle of a prairie. No, the competition isn’t Florida, Texas, or California, but Starling DID play in some all-star games against the better amatuer talent in the US. And Starling is a prove-able 19, not 26(?), so he IS missing 7 years of track record Cespedes has…so there’s that.

Muggi
3 years 9 months ago

I should say I think the guy will get 25-35 for six years, and that’s not wholly unreasonable if he’s close to as good as represented. $50m is ridiculous.

3 years 9 months ago

Well according to gary sheffield it means you will play for nothing!

3 years 9 months ago

I don’t care if he is from Mars if he can play. If he wants a big deal then he should sign a 2 year 10 million dollar deal and prove himself in the bigs. Then he would be 28 an could go for the big one if he performs.

Seth
3 years 9 months ago

He’s not being racist, it’s not like he’s making a bunch of Castro jokes. Its the fact that ANY unproven talent coming into the MLB shouldnt get paid THAT much.

The_BiRDS
3 years 9 months ago

Turn that boat around buddy!

3 years 9 months ago

It’s psychology. Even if no one is inclined to pay him that much, everyone is now inflating their initial assessment accordingly.

His true asking price could be much lower, but by having such a high number out there, people will ignore their original ideas about his worth and overpay because they percieve anything less than his stated asking price to be a deal. It’s called the anchoring effect, and it’s the same reason why leather jackets are priced at $1000, but always on “sale” for $400.

East Coast Bias
3 years 9 months ago

Yes, and you should be fortunate to have the opportunity to even post on this site. =P

55saveslives
3 years 9 months ago

Why would it cost that much? Would he rather stay in Cuba if he doesn’t get 30 mill?

3 years 9 months ago

In theory the only reason he would cost that much is if there are so many teams bidding that the price soars. (Im actually learning about that right now in Economics)

Doesnt seem like there is a huge market with SERIOUS interest for him developing

elscorcho the marlin
3 years 9 months ago

the most he will get is a 30 mill. contract.  unproven, and even though there are a lot of teams bidding, it seems every club has estimated the high at 31 mill.  

3 years 9 months ago

I don’t picture him getting more than $25-$30 at the most.

East Coast Bias
3 years 9 months ago

But don’t you think he’s more likely to get 30mil now that the number 50mil is floating about?

cyberboo
3 years 9 months ago

AA and his elite front office put a dollar value on each player in baseball.  If they decide that Cespedes is worth 40M to them, that is what they will pay, regardless what the fans think.  If other teams then want to overpay his true value, that is their choice.  The same holds true with Darvish.  If AA decides he is worth 120M, that is what the Jays will pay.  He has to be posted first though and nothing is guaranteed on that front. 

The_Porcupine
3 years 9 months ago

I don’t care how much you give him, just be careful about the length of the contract.  How old is he really?  He’s probably more like 30, so don’t overpay for typical age regression. 

If you believe he is closer to his listed age of 26, give him 5 years, 40 million.

notsureifsrs
3 years 9 months ago

assuming he’s at least an MLB regular, $30M-50M over 6 prime seasons wouldn’t be too difficult to make back for the signing club

setupunchtag
3 years 9 months ago

How do you know you’re getting his 6 prime seasons when nobody is completely sure of his age? Traditionally, 24-30 are more the prime rather than 26-32, so there’s two years of prime years already gone. If he’s two years older than he says, now you’re down to two prime years. Add in another year for him to adjust and you’ve got one prime year. No thanks.

3 years 9 months ago

Has this guy even faced a major league breaking ball? Extremely skeptical

3 years 9 months ago

Before i get murdered, i mean major league quality. Obviously Adam Wainwright has never snapped one off on him yet.

ludafish
3 years 9 months ago

can anyone hit a healthy Wainwright curveball?

3 years 9 months ago

Certainly not Carlos Beltran

3 years 9 months ago

he can’t even swing at it

3 years 9 months ago

and if he puts up numbers here like he does in Cuba, $30-$50m over 4-5 years will seem reasonable.  I do believe he will be offered 5/35 or something like that…

Tacho Bill
3 years 9 months ago

The Pirates are not in on this guy, if they ever were. That’s from NH.

The_Porcupine
3 years 9 months ago

Correct me if I’m wrong:  Haven’t signing the Cuban international players worked out better than signing/posting the Japanese players?  I can count numerous Japanese players that flopped, but I can’t think of any Cubans who have.

3 years 9 months ago

hahahha, nice incendiary comment.

The_Porcupine
3 years 9 months ago

How is it incendiary?  Both Cuba and Japan have professional baseball teams.  How have their players’ success translated into MLB?  I wasn’t trying to stir up any racial issues.

The_BiRDS
3 years 9 months ago

Do the Yankees really even need an out fielder?

Guest
3 years 9 months ago

Yankees only have control of Granderson for two more seasons, Gardner for many, but he would he terrific trade bait at some point and Swisher, who only has his current option year. They have Zoilo Almonte who looks really good and could be an option in 2013 or 2014 to man RF. The Yankees would be justified in looking at out field options and with Matt Kemp (who I thought for a while would be a Yankee) is no longer on the market.

ludafish
3 years 9 months ago

You know Grandy is going to want a BIG payday and if his next two seasons are at all like this last one (and his past is productive as well) he is going to want some big $$$, and how many 100m+ contracts would the yankees want to own? So basically, i agree they could use him.

Guest
3 years 9 months ago

Matt Kemp is pretty young, so perhaps he is a limited exception, barely, but under no circumstances, ever, should a team sign an OF to a contract for more than $100mm let alone the $150mm range. I do not see Granderson seeking or getting $100mm contract. He’ll be in the market the same time as Ellsbury and I’m sure a few others and I don’t know what affect that will have. I can see Granderson getting a new deal from the Yanks for 3 years and $42mm.

3 years 9 months ago

ha ha

ultimate913
3 years 9 months ago

All of that. Along with Mason Williams probably contributing in late 2014.

But with Swisher under team control one year, Granderson two, both being 30 years old, really makes me wonder what Cashman’s plan is for the future.

Guest
3 years 9 months ago

Right, Mason Williams too. The Yankees are pretty deep with young talent and will still have payroll flexibility going forward. I’m not overly concerned about OF long term. These are positions that are easily filled imo and if you are ever going to have a place holder on the team, RF or LF is a great spot for a year.

cyberboo
3 years 9 months ago

What are the Yankees plans for the future?  That is a no brainer.  They will just steal all the best players from teams struggling to survive as usual.  Cashman will continue trading all their minor leaguers for big names on the other teams so the fans are happy in New York, or he will throw twice the amount of money at guys, overvaluing them as usual, driving up salaries even further.  No one complained when they threw 36M at Soriano, after one good season, yet everyone complains when Papalbon gets more and he is established in the major leagues.  lol.  No one complains when New York throws obscene amounts of money at players, but let someone else do it and suddenly it was a bad signing.  lol. 

YanksFanSince78
3 years 9 months ago

Would it blow your mind if I told you the Reds signed a closer named Francisco Cordero to a 4/$46 mil deal or that the Mets signed a guy named F-Rod to a 3/$37 mil wih a $17.5 mil option (KKKAAABBBLLLOOWWWWIIIIIEEEEE)?

Every deal that one team signs sets the market for the others.

Zito——-Santana—–Sabatha….see how that works? At least the Yanks have passed out the $100 mil deals for the elite types and not the Zito’s and Carlos Lee’s of the world.

Jonathunder
3 years 9 months ago

I found the video amusing, at least we know he and his agents have a sense of humor

3 years 9 months ago

Is it a sense of humor, or is it that he’s naive?

YanksFanSince78
3 years 9 months ago

Maybe your naive. His job was to get ppl excited over his client. Mission accomplished.

3 years 9 months ago

Maybe “you’re” naive.

It’s interesting to see how easily excitable you are.

East Coast Bias
3 years 9 months ago

I never knew Peter Gammons was so well connected with the Dominican Republic…

…or anywhere outside of Boston.

3 years 9 months ago

BREAKING NEWS: Winesess say while giving a speech about nothing at a Jimmy Fund event Peter Gammons farted and turned into star dust.

Casey
3 years 9 months ago

That video was not released by his agents. In fact the agency representing him has explicitly denied that they were responsible. I could be wrong about this second part, but I believe the video was put out by the player development facility that he is currently working with.

Rcsully
3 years 9 months ago

There is no way he gets $50 million. Any org. offering him that deserves to be burned.

3 years 9 months ago

Even the Royals? Id give them a slap on the wrist

safari_punch
3 years 9 months ago

He’ll be compared against other international free agents and the player with the biggest pay day has been Chapman at just over $30 MM. He’s not getting any more than Chapman and I would guesstimate that he’ll be lucky to get half that.

Casey
3 years 9 months ago

Why do you think that he won’t get as much money as Chapman? He is supposed to be much better than Chapman. I doubt he will take any less than Chapman, and i doubt he will even have to consider doing so.

safari_punch
3 years 9 months ago

Chapman’s fastball and breaking balls were quantifiable – there was no disputing how hard they were. Plus quality pitching is ALWAYS in demand. Outfielders – especially corner outfielders as it has been hinted at – not so much.

Looking at Cespedes’ quantifiable tools – it is not the same thing as Chapman.His running can be quantified, but can Cespedes hit breaking balls, fastballs, etc. of ML quality? Can he drive them? The only thing you can do is compare Cespedes to other Cuban players and look at the small sample size of WBC competition as another measuring stick. He is a huge unknown. That is why I find it hard to fathom why his management team feel he is worth anywhere near Chapman in terms of a contract.

There are tons of guys that have been hyped over the years that were toolsy outfielders, but those tools didn’t translate into results. Why would a club want to throw so much money on a big question mark? It doesn’t make any sense to me. Even $15 MM is generous for a player like Cespedes.Has there even been a discussion where he would debut if signed? In the minors? Which level? How long would it take to get him to the Show? .

Not Amused
3 years 9 months ago

“He is supposed to be much better than chapman.” – Casey Hart.

Based on what exactly ?

nictonjr
3 years 9 months ago

 Ever see Chapman hit, run or play OF??  Cespedes does all 3 better than Chapman..

3 years 9 months ago

id like to see the white sox in on him to be honest. 40 mil isn’t that much.

3 years 9 months ago

Im sure Adam Dunn and Alex Rios would agree

ludafish
3 years 9 months ago

Chapman got a lot of money – but dont you all think its easier to transition pitching to MLB rather than hitting? When you are a pitcher with a crazy breaking ball and a FB over 100+ you have a leg up on many MLBpitchers and all you have to learn is where to throw it. Your stuff already is MLB quality. Now Cespedes has power, speed, yadda yadda ya…but how will it transition to MLB? How many guys have had these tools and done nothing in MLB?

AmericanMovieFan
3 years 9 months ago

Fellas, you’re under valuing the power of hype. Why do players with virtually identical numbers have such disparate career earning totals? Because of hype. Why is Nick Swisher only valued at around $6-8 million a season by most people and yet Vernon Wells is working on the high-end half of a $126 million deal when their numbers are virtually identical? Because of perception.

Wells’ stats since 2005: 167 HR’s/581 RBI’s

Swish’s stats since ’05: 183 HR’s/572 RBI’s

And yet Wells is paid like he’s mashing 40 HR’s a season. Now, granted, prior to ’05 he had  a break out season where he drove in 100 runs, followed by a season in which he mashed 30 dingers and drove in 117 runs, but after that his averages dropped precipitously in both power and RBI’s.

I bring this up just because it’s a clear example of perception versus reality.

Cespedes is being perceived as a game changer, so he’ll get game changer money from someone, but in all likelihood he’ll turn out to be a 20-25 HR hitter at best, which come a dime a dozen in the big leagues, so all this hype could be for naut.

Muggi
3 years 9 months ago

I get your point, but using what is generally regarded as the worst contract in the history of baseball kinda sucks the air out of your argument.

It’s not like the world thought Wells was worth the money…the deal was panned as a huge mistake from Day 1.

AmericanMovieFan
3 years 9 months ago

Okay, and granted the Blue Jays are notorious for their albatross contracts, but the point does still stand. I mean, even if he wasn’t give a 7 year deal averaging $18MM a season, people were still saying he was worth $12-15MM a season, which is still big time money.

cyberboo
3 years 9 months ago

Correction:  J. P. Riccardi the twit was known for his albatross contracts.  NO other Blue Jay manager is that stupid.  Hey, Riccardi is now an employee of the Mets.  I’m surprised he hasn’t influenced Alderson into signing Aramis, Reyes, Fielder, Pujols, Wilson to 30M contracts at 20 years yet.  lol.  The worst contract in history belongs to A-rod.  Wells ranks a distant second.  lol.  I’m sure the Crawford, Sabathia, Werth contracts will overtake Well’s contract in a few years. That isn’t taking into account Pujols and Fielder yet. The jury will be out on those for at least three more years. lol.

0bsessions
3 years 9 months ago

Hype wha?

You’re basically ignoring the forest for the trees here. You’re looking at one little tiny bit of the big picture. You want to cite hype and then cite figures that completely ignore most of the story.

Wells was signed to his current deal after five full seasons in the MLB right after winning his third Gold Glove in a row. He had averaged 3.64 WAR across that time period and was coming off of a 5.8 WAR year in his age 28 season, just entering his prime. Along with his GG, he had two Silver Sluggers, a pair of All Star appearances and a top ten MVP finish to his name.

Swisher, on the other hand, was signed at the beginning of only his third full season in the MLB, one of which was only for 2.1 WAR coming off of a 3.9 WAR season in his age 26 season. Sixth place in the 2005 RotY voting was his biggest claim to fame (And he placed that in a season where a reliever won the award and Cano is the only other guy who got a vote in the AL who’s still any good).

One other huge factor you ignored: Wells was extended by Ricciardi, Swisher by Beane. Ricciardi’s, a notoriously bad GM as opposed to Beane, a notoriously cheap GM.

A more accurate contract parallel to Swisher would be Pedroia or Longoria, both of whom signed before they’d established their true MLB value. Wells was overpaid and everyone knew it, but he wasn’t expected to be as much of a bust as he was.

3 years 9 months ago

Hype had nothing to do with why Vernon got paid and Swisher didn’t! Wells was a true free agent that sign to stay with the Jays(Face of the team). Swisher signed with Oakland when he hit arbritration. His first contract bought out the 3 years of arbritration and 2 years of free agency. If Swisher would have waited he may not have recieved what Wells received (Terrible Average) but he could have easily double his pay day to 10 per year.

The first 5 season for both Wells 27 years old Swisher 28 
Wells      456R  139HR   487 RBI  
Swisher   426R   131HR  398 RBI 

This is why Boras never lets his clients sign away free agent years!!!

3 years 9 months ago

Advanced metrics say SWISH NOT WELLS.

Haewon Kim
3 years 9 months ago

Fukudome got four-year, $48 million contract.  Much rather have Cespedes for that money.

All Day Réy
3 years 9 months ago

Its a lot easier to say that when you already know how Fukudome turned out.

setupunchtag
3 years 9 months ago

Yep. When Fukodome was coming out people thought he’d be a more powerful, less speedy Ichiro with a lower BA, or a faster Matsui with less pop and a higher BA.