With all the bad contracts and salary dumps on the way this offseason, I thought it’d be fun to create the Salary Dump All-Star Team. These are the worst contracts at each position, based mainly on 2006 salary. The salary below is just ’06. I used Cot’s Baseball Contracts for the figures.
This group would cost over $150MM next year, and I left out the bench and bullpen. Disagree with a choice? Leave your thoughts in the comments.
C – Jason Kendall – $11,000,000 – Scott Podsednik, but with a bigger paycheck and catcher’s gear. And less speed.
1B – Phil Nevin – $10,000,000 – I know Jim Thome and Todd Helton are paid more, but Nevin doesn’t seem to have anything left after hitting .237.287/.379 in ’05.
2B – Alfonso Soriano – $10,000,000 – That salary is just a guess, as Soriano figures to get a decent raise from his current $7.5MM salary through arbitration. The 36 HR look great, but the atrocious defense and .309 OBP don’t.
SS – Cristian Guzman – $4,200,000 – He’s got the lowest salary on the team. But both Guzman’s glovework and offense took a nosedive and he’s a huge detriment to the team.
3B – Mike Lowell – $9,000,000 – The Marlins are so desperate to dump Lowell’s salary that they may let the Rangers explore the potential of 25 year-old Josh Beckett. Some have whispered about steroids when talking about Lowell’s massive decline…but isn’t it possible that he simply lost it?
RF – Magglio Ordonez – $15,000,000 – This deal really didn’t make sense for the Tigers. Magglio’s power numbers were way down in his initial half-season with Detroit.
CF – Ken Griffey Jr. – $12,500,000 – Maybe Griffey finally earned his salary in 2005. But he still has to go, not that Dan O’Brien understands that.
LF – Ryan Klesko – $10,000,000 – The Padres would be ecstatic to get this one off the books.
SP – Chan Ho Park – $13,000,000 – The posterboy for bad contracts. And for getting photographed in compromising positions.
SP – Eric Milton – $8,500,000 – How is it that every casual baseball fan knew this would end up terribly, but Reds’ management didn’t?
SP – Carl Pavano – $8,000,000 – They’re the Yankees, so they can do stuff like this. But A.J. Burnett for similar money will be a much better investment.
SP – Matt Clement – $9,500,000 – You can blame the injury, but his strikeout rate was way down last year. Might be league average from here on out.
Closer – Keith Foulke – $7,250,000 – This was certainly not a bad contract. But the Red Sox would be happy to get out of the final year of the deal.