Morales Rejected $30MM Extension Last Summer

Kendrys Morales is still without an employer as he and agent Scott Boras appear willing to wait beyond the June draft in order to free a signing team from the burden of having to surrender a draft pick. However, Morales had the opportunity to sign a deal that would've kept him in Seattle through 2017 last summer, according to Todd Dybas of the Tacoma News Tribune. As Dybas writes, general manager Jack Zduriencik recently told fans at a meet-and-greet that the Mariners offered Morales a three-year, $30MM extension after last year's All-Star break.

Reports last summer indicated that talks between the two sides never got serious due to the Mariners' surprise over the asking price from Boras and Morales. Interest in Morales on the open market was clearly never as high as the two had hoped, with the Mariners and Orioles being the teams that were the most frequently connected to the DH/first baseman.

Perhaps shedding the "draft pick compensation" label will aid Morales and get him a deal that is more to his liking, but it's tough to see him landing something north of Seattle's 2013 offer. In a now-controversial piece from ESPN, several executives offered their thoughts on Morales' value, but $8-10MM was as high as any were willing to go in terms of average annual value. (The MLBPA has asked the commissioner's office to investigate that situation, as the anonymous executives' comments are in violation of the collective bargaining agreement.)

The 30-year-old Morales batted .277/.336/.449 with 23 homers last season and earned $5.25MM in his final year of arbitration eligibility.

62 Responses to Morales Rejected $30MM Extension Last Summer Leave a Reply

  1. UK Tiger
    UK Tiger 1 year ago

    Oh dear Kendrys, or more likely, the man who said “no, dont take that” to him, Scotty B.

    An AAV of $10m is without doubt probably the best he could have hoped for on the open market.

    The more information that keeps seeping out about Morales & Drew, the worse their “super” agent appears to have handled it.

  2. JacobyWanKenobi 1 year ago

    Is he not aware that he’s not nearly good enough to be holding out this long?

    • Gothapotamus 1 year ago

      At this point, he’s holding out until after the draft to lose the draft pick attached to him.

      • GD 1 year ago

        And then what?! Does he think a team will pay more than $30m 3/yrs?! He lost a lot of money by not taking that from Seattle!

        • Gothapotamus 1 year ago

          I don’t think the goal for him is to secure a multi year deal this season. It’s probably to try and build value to secure a multi year deal this offseason.

          Granted, he’s lost a lot of guaranteed money, but all he can do is try to recoup as much as possible now.

          • docmilo5 1 year ago

            This was likely a shot of reality for Morales and Cruz. DH types get one year deals for $8 to $10 mill. They should both get used to one year deals going forward. If you sniff a multi year deal? Grab it with both hands.

          • mwagner26 1 year ago

            How does one secure a multi-year deal with playing only half of the year?

          • rouscher 1 year ago

            By giving a 4 year 31 million dollar deal, 1 million for the rest of this year and the 10 AAV for the rest
            Of the contract, that’s how i would approach it

          • If you approached it that way, teams would say no.

          • strikethree 1 year ago

            “It’s probably to try and build value to secure a multi year deal this offseason.”

            You can’t build value if you don’t play.

            Even without the draft pick cost, he would probably still field “low” offers (low to him and his agent). The best situation for him would be if there is demand for his position through injuries.

            He should have at least taken whatever offer was given to him during the off-season.

    • Karkat 1 year ago

      Not sure he’s “holding out” at this point so much as nobody wants to sign him right now.

    • Jose 1 year ago

      You know, Kendry thinks that he deserves a Cabrera like contract through 2023. Drew? Tulowitsky money and years…

  3. 14 Rocks 1 year ago

    It’s going to be interesting when June rolls around and teams still aren’t interested in him. He was crazy to turn down the 14M qualifying offer and even crazier to turn down the 30M contract.

  4. YewNork 1 year ago

    Ortiz gets 15M per year as a pure DH. What does Morales (or Boras) think he is going to get?

    • GD 1 year ago

      And Ortiz is proven for many years and a 33-40+ HR hitter for years.

  5. Full time DHs not named David Ortiz have not been getting big money or multiyear deals for quite awhile now. Boras should’ve seen that and the effects of the QO. The spin doctor has been losing his touch as of late. Bourn and Lohse settled for far less than what they set out to get last year and Drew and Morales are enjoying Spring Training in April with Freddy Garcia.

    • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

      How many other full time DH’s are there? Billy Butler is the only comparable and signed for 4 years/$30mil, and is a much better hitter than Morales

      • Besides Butler, Raul Ibanez and basically Victor Martinez and Adam Dunn. Inspiring list.

        • connfyoozed . 1 year ago

          Out of those, I would estimate that Morales and maybe Martinez can still play a passable first base, in the short term only. The others should never use a glove.

          • Christopher Rioux 1 year ago

            Even when the other guys are in the field, their glove really doesn’t see too much work…

          • connfyoozed . 1 year ago

            No, they are not good defenders, but they can play a few innings at first and not totally embarrass themselves.

      • LazerTown 1 year ago

        Granted BB’s deal is an extension, not a free agent deal.

    • Steve Adams 1 year ago

      Tough to say Boras is losing his touch when Jacoby Ellsbury and Shin-Soo Choo scored a combined $283MM this offseason. I agree that Morales was handled poorly — he’s the one player I think should have accepted the QO over the past two seasons.

      I think Morales’ plight was predictable. Stephen Drew’s struggles to find a good deal have surprised me. And heck, Boras somehow found a two-year deal for Mike Pelfrey.

      The QO has thrown a lot of reputable agents for a loop. Katz and Stringfellow know what they’re doing and struggled just as much with Cruz and Santana.

      • Choo and Ellsbury were going to get paid though. You, Tim, Jeff, or your humble RevMurph could’ve negotiated those deals. Cano certainly isn’t missing Boras.

      • Mike1L 1 year ago

        Perhaps the agents and players should start to see the QO as the “pillow contract”

      • Mike1L 1 year ago

        Drew is a puzzle. I think part of Drew’s problem has been that he’s not perceived as a elite player, just a good one, and Boras seemed to be constantly shifting his demands. If you are a exec, do you really want to keep grasping at a slippery ice-cube? You allocate your money to the players you can buy, and you move on.

        • nepp 1 year ago

          I would imagine that a big part of why he’s not perceived as an elite player is because he is not actually an elite player…
          3 year WAR average: 1.6

          WAR by season:
          2013: 3.4
          2012: -0.3
          2011: 1.7
          2010: 4.7
          2009: 2.0

          If he were an elite player, he would have gotten a commensurate contract.

      • Damon Bowman 1 year ago

        Why would Drew be so surprising? Set aside the compensation pick and he was still limited to no more than a half dozen teams who had a spot for him. Add in the salary he was demanding and the pick and it should be no surprise at all. He’s slightly better than average and should be paid accordingly.

  6. Kadoc 1 year ago

    Now that becomes really funny.

  7. Mike1L 1 year ago

    In all fairness to Morales, if Boras was telling him gigantic contract, why would he consider 3/30? But It’s pretty clear that he should have taken the QO, if for no other reason to reaffirm that he was a quality hitter. Then Seattle would either have had to make another QO (making it 2/29) or let him walk without the loss of pick.

  8. Robert Eichhorn 1 year ago

    So? That justifies collusion? Kendrys Morales has a right to pursue a contract in a FREE market. Unless all 30 teams are have the freedom to sign him without fear of losing a draft pick, then it’s not a free market. Zach Greinke had a true free market last year and look what he got. Same with Masahiro Tanaka. Bronson Arroyo also had a free market but didn’t get what he wanted because the full free market determined his value. Separate your understandable dislike of Scott Boras and the fact that none of us will ever have the opportunity to negotiate that kind of money to play baseball from the situation. It’s wrong. Agents should start threatening to accept the QO and then have their clients hold out in Spring Training for the years to force teams to negotiate in good faith. There needs to be more risk to teams making the QO than one year 14.1 million.

    • NickinIthaca 1 year ago

      Players hold out? What is is this, the NFL? Morales had an opportunity to increase his salary from $5.25 million dollars up to $10 million per year over 3 years. Then, he had an opportunity to practically triple his salary, and he turned that down. He and Boras misread, and misplayed the market. Morales wasn’t worth $14.1 million per year to begin with – toss on the draft pick compensation, and it is no surprise that he’s still without a job.

    • section 34 1 year ago

      The only almost smart thing you’ve written is that “agents should blah blah the QO.”

      Boras should have accepted the QO for Morales. He misjudged the market.

      This system was negotiated by the MLB Players’ Association. It’s pretty hard to argue with MLBPA’s series of successes. They’ve never wanted a truly free market as they believe it wouldn’t raise salaries as much as a limited trickle of available talent.

    • East Coast Bias 1 year ago

      Wait, are you saying 14.1m is NOT enough of a risk? Astounding.

    • Metsfan93 1 year ago

      The league collectively bargained this. This is how things work.

    • mshameole 1 year ago

      Please name another agent whose clients have the same problem as Drew and Morales.

    • strikethree 1 year ago

      Seattle actually made the wrong moves in offering the extension and QO. Those were mistakes that Morales didn’t capitalize on. So you’re wrong here, he was given the opportunity to make more than the market value for his services.

      No one cares that this isn’t a “free” market — that term doesn’t mean anything.

    • Damon Bowman 1 year ago

      Stop — this is not collusion. Collusion happens when the teams get together to keep everyone’s salary lower. Cano didn’t have a problem getting overpaid in Seattle. Ellsbury got paid. Choo doesn’t seem to be clipping coupons to get by. McCann, Granderson, the list goes on. Two players and their agent completely misread the market for their talents and didn’t get the money they expected. This is not collusion.

  9. DerekJeterDan 1 year ago

    Talk about overplaying your hand…
    Rejected the Qualifying offer, and a 3 year 30 Mil Extension?
    Very bad agent work by Boras who should have learned last year from Lohse that Draft Pick Compensation negatively hinders Free Agent Value with the Draft pick looming large.

  10. Pegasus 1 year ago

    Seems like this guy has just been in a downward spiral ever since he broke his leg on the Angels

  11. sourbob 1 year ago

    I think we all know what Nelson Muntz would say here.

  12. section 34 1 year ago

    Somebody forward this to Jayson Stark, who thinks the system is a problem.

    Morales’ inability to properly value himself is the problem.

  13. Christopher Rioux 1 year ago

    Even looking through the most Boras-esque rose-colored glasses, how does a 1.5WAR player think he’s getting more than 3y$30mm? Okay, there’s a mistake.

    BUT… THEN when you know you’re going to be saddled with the pick compensation, you pretty much have to know you have to take the QO, right? Hell, he might not see $14.1mm now for this year, 2015, AND 2016!! Without the compensation he’d be worth about that much for 2015 and 2016, but now you have to factor in possible erosion of skills.

    If he lands a make good deal post-draft, he REALLY has to make good on it to earn all of that $14.1mm back. (And forget that $30mm).

    He’s Luol Deng if you had to give up a 1st rounder to sign Deng. Both really overestimated their own worth, and their original teams are much better off for them not accepting the original offer.

  14. hozie007 1 year ago

    Hopefully sooner, rather than later, players and prospects will realize that Boras likes to gamble with other peoples livelihood and money. If they actually read their contract with Boras, they would realize he controls their entire life now and in the next life……he is the devil.

  15. Trock 1 year ago


  16. Dave 1 year ago

    Baseball is currently full of two things:

    Too much money

    Too many mediocre/replacement level athletes.

    So the bar gets raised higher for players that aren’t really worth the money, and there’s no NFL like system where you can cut bait on a bad contract and just finish paying out the signing bonus. It’s a little unfair to everyone. Someone like Morales gets the impression that he’s worth 15m+/yr, just because some other cash-rich teams are signing average players for that much money.

    Boras is there to push that line higher and higher but when you see the success St. Louis and Oakland and other teams have found in their minor league systems without overpaying for veterans… it makes you think that someone like Morales isn’t worth the draft pick OR the salary they’re demanding and when you put it in the same package, who wants that?

    • Lefebvre Believer 1 year ago

      Too much money? That doesn’t really make sense. Whatever money is there is the exact right amount, because that’s what the sport and business of Major League Baseball has been able to bring in.

  17. ariel777 1 year ago

    With a top player (e.g., Ellsbury or Choo) Scotty will do as well, probably better, than anyone else. With marginal talent, at best, he will over-value to the point of damaging the client’s status, as has been done with both Drew and Morales, particularly the latter. Perhaps the Red Sox helped (or damaged, your perspective dependent) by making Drew a QO, as I am hard-pressed to consider Drew anything more than marginal talent and certainly not worth 14mm. Cherington read the obvious and knew the QO would not be accepted, with the distinct possibility of manufacturing a #1 DC if some inept GM stepped up to the plate and bought the Boras non-sense. But there are just so many Jack Zs out there. It’s all a game that Boras, historically has played quite well, but it may have run its course.

  18. yabba1 1 year ago

    Clearly he’s just a firm believer in re-incarnation and thinks he’ll do better the next time through.

  19. $40129616 1 year ago

    I’m confused. How is a three-year extension offered in 2013 “through 2017″? A three-year extension would have been 2014, 2015 and 2016.

  20. YankeeFan™ 1 year ago

    That’s what you get for been greedy

  21. Luke Wise 1 year ago

    So he turned down a decent deal with 3 years of security, and another decent 1 year deal. Yeah Kendrys, the QO is the root of all of your problems. I wonder what the plan is after the draft rolls around and he still has no offers.

    • pft2 1 year ago

      Maybe he did not like Seattle and expected he should be able to get a similar or better deal elsewhere playing for a better team. It ain’t that hard to understand.

      Answer to your last question is to file a grievance against MLB claiming collusion. Doubt that happens though, there should be plenty of teams interested in an impact middle of the order bat with runs being as hard they are to score for some teams

      • Derpy 1 year ago

        He isn’t an impact bat, he is a slightly above average DH. Meaning there are 15 teams who would be at all interested, more realistically far fewer. Redsox and Astros won’t care, for instance. Mariners don’t need him. Not many teams do need him, to be honest. How many teams are really in the market for a DH? I mean, I can’t even remember the last time a team made a major mid season DH acquisition.

      • Luke Wise 1 year ago

        I’m sure Seattle is low on many players list, but wouldn’t they rather play and make money there than to be training during the season? Are these teams going to be willing to pay him what he thinks he’s worth though?

  22. Pei Kang 1 year ago

    Nah, every GM was smart enough to know he’s not worth more than $10M a year.

  23. pft2 1 year ago

    So if Morales was worth 3-30 for a team like the Mariners, at the cost of a compensation pick, why would he not be worth more on the open market with no draft pick compensation attached. Answer that.

    • Mike1L 1 year ago

      Presumably he wouldn’t be signing until June, since he still has the loss of pick until then. So, prorated salary. And without the possibility of offering a QO, he’s worth less. And, hoping that teams still have the bucks to spend in the summer that they have been holding back on. The Mariners would have had him three full years, and the right to offer him a pick in year 4 (assuming the system was still place.) The situations are not exactly comparable. Perhaps in June Boras’ planning will end up him getting that money, or more. Or, perhaps he would end up like Madson, for whom Boras had a terrific offer, but reached for more, and found the offer pulled back.

    • Derpy 1 year ago

      Wut? He was a member of the Mariners, it was an extension offer. Compensation pick is totally irrelevant.

      As to if his value would be higher on the market, it depends. Were the Mariners overvaluing him with their offer or were they asking for a hometown discount? Three year, 30m for a 1.5 WAR DH seems pretty close to market value to me. Maybe even over market value.

      • jed_hoyer 1 year ago

        more like boras holding out for money. looks like it backfired. the compensation pick this year isn’t any different than the old system..

  24. monroe_says
    monroe_says 1 year ago

    As a Seattle fan, one can only be grateful for the moves that Zduriencik desperately wanted to make – but didn’t. (Signing Josh Hamilton, trading Taijuan Walker for Justin Upton, extending Morales …)

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