JAN. 13: Maeda will earn a base of $3MM in each of the eight seasons of his contract and can earn an additional $8.15MM per year beyond that sum, reports Yahoo’s Jeff Passan (links to Twitter). Maeda’s yearly bonuses kick in at 90 innings pitched, per Passan. From that point forth, he’ll earn $250K for every 10 innings up until 200 innings, according to the report. Maeda will also earn $1MM upon making his 15th, 20th, 25th, 30th and 32nd starts each season. Passan’s report leaves $150K of bonuses each year unaccounted for, so there are a few final missing details to Maeda’s exact contract structure. Ultimately, the contract can max out at a total of $90.2MM over eight seasons.
JAN. 7: The Dodgers have added another significant pitcher, officially signing star Japanese righty Kenta Maeda. It’s quite an unusual contract for the Wasserman Media Group client, whose physical reportedly revealed some issues that could cause health problems down the line.
Maeda, 28, will reportedly receive only a $25MM guarantee over a lengthy eight-year term. Los Angeles will also pay a $20MM posting fee to Maeda’s former NPB club, the Hiroshima Carp. Maeda can also earn up to $10MM annually through incentives tied to the number and length of his starts, maxing out the annual potential at around thirty games started and 200 innings pitched. In the event that all the incentives are triggered, then, the deal’s total value could top $100MM.
Notably, Maeda won’t have the ability to capture upside through other means. Per reports, he can’t opt into arbitration when he reaches sufficient service time and won’t have any opt-out opportunities that would put him onto the open market.
MLBTR’s Tim Dierkes tabbed Maeda with the 14th-highest earning power coming into the winter in his list of the top fifty free agents. Dierkes predicted Maeda would earn about $60MM (plus the release fee) over five years, matching the overall estimated commitments for Jeff Samardzija and Mike Leake. (Both have indeed agreed to five-year deals, with Samardzija getting $90MM and Leake landing at the predicted value.)
Los Angeles has moved to add arms after losing Zack Greinke to the division-rival Diamondbacks and then blowing up a deal with Hisashi Iwakuma after a physical. The club already inked Scott Kazmir yesterday, though that created a rare imbalance, with southpaws Clayton Kershaw, Brett Anderson, and Alex Wood set to be joined by fellow lefty Hyun-jin Ryu when he returns from injury.
Adding Maeda would figure to bump one of those left-handers to the pen — if it doesn’t create some impetus toward a trade. Brandon McCarthy is also set to return from Tommy John surgery at some point during the year, and the organization has depth options in Mike Bolsinger, Carlos Frias, and others. Wood looks like the most likely trade piece, and he could conceivably be packaged with a variety of L.A.’s other interesting assets.
There’s no disputing the quality of Maeda’s work in Japan. Last year’s 2.09 ERA was more or less typical for the veteran righty, as he’s yet to allow over 2.60 earned in any of the last six seasons. While he doesn’t quite have the peripherals or the scouting hype that Masahiro Tanaka did when he came over, Maeda has long been viewed as a MLB-caliber arm.
Certainly, the successful transition of top NPB arms like Tanaka and Yu Darvish — among others before them — reduces the uncertainty regarding Maeda. He’s often been referred to as something of an injury risk, given his small stature, but Maeda has only missed a few starts and has averaged right around two hundred frames annually since becoming a full-time starter.
Maeda is also said to be showing new life with his secondary offerings, as Baseball America’s Ben Badler recently wrote. Per Badler, the righty has shown a new-look changeup that may have surpassed his slider as his best offspeed pitch. While he’s not overpowering in terms of velocity, Maeda has excellent control (1.9 BB/9 in his career) and would obviously hold even more appeal with two swing-and-miss offerings.
Christopher Meola reported the signing on Twitter, as well as its essential contract terms (links to Twitter). Joel Sherman of the New York Post reported the precise guarantee (in a tweet), the annual incentive value, and the “red flags” that drove the deal’s unusual structure (Twitter link). ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick first noted the issues in the physical (via Twitter).Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times (here and here) and J.P. Hoornstra of the Los Angeles News Group (in a tweet) had additional contract details.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.
Nice pickup for the Dodgers
How much I wonder
Gonna say 5/$80 ish, plus the $20m pay-to-play to the Carp.
I still don’t think it’s enough to what the giants and dbacks did, the dodgers rotation and bullpen still has questin marks
Kazmir, Maeda, anderson, kershaw, and Hyu
I think their rotation is pretty comparable to the Dbacks and Giants now. Obviously not the star power at the top, and there are tons of injury questions, but Kershaw, Maeda, Kazmir, Anderson, and Ryu/Wood is pretty deep and very solid.
Not the star power at the top? Have you heard of Clayton Kershaw?
The rotation has a clear number one and then the other four or five are 3s or 4s. So the Dodgers will have trouble out of the two slot hit should do well in the 5 slot. So the loss of Grienke should even out by upgrades in the backend. But that’s just regular season. backend upgrades don’t help that much in the postseason.
Giants won with only madbum the royals didn’t have a legit ace so that’s that. The games not played on paper. I’ll take my chances with Ryu who has been clutch in the playoffs. Btw a healthy Ryu is a solid #1 on most/#2 on a contending team.
Good, please take your chances with that rotation.
As do the Giants offense and Dbacks back end of the rotation every team has question marks April is a long ways away
Giants offense has question marks? Their infield is the best in the league and Pence is returning. Blanco can play a passable LF. CF is really their only question mark.
SP ranks per FanGraphs projections:
#1 Dodgers (18.6 fWAR) WITHOUT Maeda
#2 Mets (18.4 fWAR)
#3 Cubs (18.3 fWAR)
#4 Nationals (17.8 fWAR)
If the Dodgers don’t have the best rotation, they are at least among the top 3 and better than Giants/D-Backs
Stop with the war. If something happens to Kershaw the Dogers are screwed but if something were to happen to Harvey, the Mets could deal with it. Kershaw is their whole rotation.
war is over, if you want it
Red Sox also had more projected WAR than the Yankees going into 2015… what happened there?
Where are your rings?
Yeah that sounds pretty close..Maybe a little less with having to pay the posting fee..He only made 2.5 mil with the Carp last yr I think.
Think of the posting fee as a tax on what the player gets.
After missing out on Greinke, they signed a nice duo of pitchers. I actually expected Maeda to be in pinstripes next season.
Are you expecting maeda to do what greinke did last year
No but Greinke only pitches every 5th day. They replaced him with two solid guys in Maeda and Kazmir, plus they’re getting Ryu back. I like 2016’s rotation better than 2015, by quite a bit.
Bank On It
Ehhhh don’t know about that Greinke was extremely good…Kazmir is pretty decent and who knows how madea will adjust to the majors because over their he was going up against double a talent
Check Fangraphs the Dodgers have the best team on paper. They just trumped everyone. I wonder if now they make a deal with the Yanks for Miller. Miller for Wood or De Leon. or something along those lines.
the cubs still have the best team on paper. and its not really close.
They’re good but they still have questions defensively in the outfield and at C . They also have questions in the pen. They could be a great team but the royals are still the best team. Revisit after offseason.
What questions do the Cubs have at Catcher or in the pen? Miguel Montero played the second half of the season with a broken thumb and still played and hit above league average at his position. The pen had a lights out closer, a solid righty set up man and a solid lefty. The added Warren, resigned Richard, resigned Cahill who were both lights out in the pen. Their pen actually was a strength last year and it’s better now. The Cubs are clearly a better team than the Dodgers on paper and it’s not close.
Anderson, kazmir and Ryu all have injury/in consistency red flags. Not enough stability if you ask me.
The difference is, Greinke nearly won every 5th day or at least kept the dodgers within a run or 2 of winning
No but no one should be expecting grienke to do what he did last year Ethier. The problem with the Dodgers was the fact they lost Ryu last year and needed a solid arm. Ryu is a two and a terrific one at that a return to form would have the Dodgers right there. There is still a need for a bullpen arm and figuring out the OF. It’s been a nice offseason though for all the crap the FOs been getting.
Yanks and Dodgers trade Miller for a starter, maybe Deleon or Wood.
More likely De Leon AND Wood. Miller coming off reliever of the year, Wood struggled with LA after trade.
East Coast Bias
The Yankees can get a lot more for Miller than Wood or DeLeon. If they trade him, or Gardner, it will be for a clear number 3, not a number 6.
East Coast Bias
Just to clarify, Wood is the number 6, not DeLeon. I like DeLeon, and Montas as prospects. But no way do the Yanks give up their closer for Wood.
I can tell you this…Grenkie won’t do what Grenkie did last year
I don’t expect greinke to do anything close to last year, but I also don’t think Maeda will do any better
That’s fair but Kershaw is still a better pitcher than Grienke. Not by much but still is. We seem to forget that Grienke has had
elbow question marks each spring until he gets his shot. Granted he’s still a workhorse. Nobody knows how he will cope with being the guy. I laugh because every single pitcher that is mentioned after Kershaw, Madbum, and Grienke are question marks. Cueto staying healthy is a question mark, Shark is a question mark, Miller( does anyone really know what they are going to get with him in a hitter friendly environment) is a question mark, so is Corbin. The same goes for Ryu, Maeda, and Kazmir.
Grienke has been the number one guy before. He won a Cy Young award with The Royals and was a staff ace with the Brewers and Angels. I would fear the D-Backs way more than the Dodgers right now. The offense that Arizona has plus that starting staff has that team looking scary good. I would argue that the Dodgers are the third best team in that division. The Giants were to far from losing that division this year and they had 1 good starter. The D-Backs had a half season of Corbin and nothing else in that rotation and still won 79 games.
Greinke won’t up the 1.66 era but maybe something like 2.65-3.10 era , 200 innings and over 200 strike outs.
The question should be, are the dbacks expecting Greinke to do what Greinke did last year??? Apparently they are. I’m pretty sure the Dodgers will be getting the better deal by signing maeda at a reasonable price as opposed to signing Greinke at an astronomical price.
I like it makes you wonder who the 5 will be in the rotation
Kershaw, Kazmir, Maeda, Anderson, Wood. Pretty good rotation, plus after 2016 when Anderson deal is up (and Kazmir opts out, probably) Ryu and McCarthy should be healthy. Good signing by Friedman and co.
This is unsurprising. I wonder if they knew they were gonna sign Maeda when they signed Kazmir Yesterday…
imo It’s not enough to what the giants and the dbacks did to their rotations. The dodgers still have some question marks in the bullpen and the rotation. ryu anderson and wood.
That still doesn’t answer the question
They have question marks for sure, but they none of them look like prime candidates to move to the bullpen. They also have McCarthy coming back in May. They have to trade somebody, my bet is on Wood.
I still see the giants and the dbacks fighting it out for the division.
Maeda is still unproven in the MLB but I’d say he’s at least as effective as Samardzija. Cueto is the ringer for the Giants with Madbum being equal to Kershaw. A pitcher, perhaps a health RYU, is going to have to step up to equalize the pitching staffs. The Dodgers have the edge in position plays, IMO. The Dbacks? close but there yet, but close for sure..
kershaw is better then bum pls stop talking
There’s no doubt that Kershaw is still the best pitcher in the division, but now he’s got company in the rotation and the dodgers have more pieces available to trade. It’ll be a really competitive division for sure
Agree Kershaw is better overall as a pitcher to Madbum (marginally), but can’t do anything about that. So kershaw will have 19 wins and Madbum will have 18, livible.
Maeda vs Shark (equal)
Anderson vs Peavy (equal)
Kazmir vs Cueto : stupid comparison, Cueto by miles.
Then a combo of Cain and Heston vs Ryu and Wood.
So overall Giants rotation is better. But who cares, the battle is between Giants and Dbacks anyway.
I love how the division is crowned during the offseason.
Who says I crowned the divisional champs in the off season. All I said was, at present with the comparable rosters, it is between Dbacks and Giants.
Thanks for no actually reading a post, and commenting on it
Last time LAD won something was 1988, last time SF won something was 2014. Are you still the one doing LOL?
Lol! there is nothing that would support shark and maeda being equal. Sure maeda hasn’t pitched in MLB yet but shark sort of sucked last season
I’d would take bumgarner over kershaw , he’s battle tested in the post season , got to have an ace to do it all, and that’s one of kershaw’s Achilles heals
Your making every excuse to not pick Kershaw because your an Angels fan. Which is pretty fricking stupid just because you guys don’t have the best pitcher in the game doesn’t mean you shouldn’t hate on him #kersh>Bum
But the Angels do have the best player in the game though
Not in the playoffs
… in the regular season.
Hahaha Bum is equal to Kersh. Hahaha that’s hilarious. Madison is a great pitcher but Kersh is the best pitcher in the game
Dbacks are not going to be as good as you think. The Miller-Inciarte deal was basically a wash, value-wise (which makes the addition of the extra pieces going to Atlanta just bizarre). Greinke’s great, but he is replacing an OK-ish 5th starter in Rubby de la Rosa, and so is worth, what, maybe 4 or 5 wins? That makes them about a 500 team.
I say that’s a fair assessment
You’re an idiot
Smardizjahakfheks is way overrated
The Kazmir deal was done before Christmas,it was just announced yesterday.I think Maeda visiting with the Dodger brass at Dodger Stadium on Christmas eve was a pretty good indicator that he was heading in the Dodgers direction.
I can see Wood traded now to supplement the bullpen.
They need all the rotation help they need…. They should keep Wood and resign Howell
They already re-signed Howell, did they not?
The Dodgers exercised their option on Howell for 2016.The bullpen may not be that bad now,with the overflow of starters(barring injuries or trades)plus 2015 starters,Mike Bolsinger and Carlos Frias,who will both probably be in the pen in 2016.
Howell picked up his option, which I think was $8 mill or something like that.
Fangraphs team WAR has Dodgers at 47.9 compared to Giants 39.5. Dodgers are a better team by far on paper!
Baseball games are played on grass and dirt, not paper.
How accurate were their projections last year? They had Toronto in first in the East, Texas in the west, and the Tigers and Red Sox in last? Didn’t think so. Meaningless!!!
Well, there you have it. Dodgers win the 2016 World Series in December 2015.
So who goes? Wood?
Alex Wood to the Braves for Jim Johnson and Nick Swisher. Would be a good deal for both sides. *snarky grin*
You couldn’t pay the Dodgers for Johnson, that guy was a train wreak last year
So they have Kershaw, Ryu, Kazmir, Wood, Anderson, Maeda, McCarthy. My god.
7 Capable starting pitchers .
7 starters but 3 of them with question marks.
Which team doesn’t have question marks angelsfan? Depth is the most important thing to a successful team because everyone in sports gets hurt.
And de Leon pairing with Urias in the minors, waiting on call. I’d keep the depth and add bullpen pieces from here on out. Wait until midsummer to look at the trades everyone seems hot heavy on, now.
I don’t know why people are ignoring Urias. He’s the top lefty in the minors and he could be up by midseason.
Syndergaard was in the same position coming into last year and ended up being a workhorse in the playoff rotation.
Nobody is ignoring Urias, In fact he gets mentioned way too often as a factor in 2016 when he is all of 19 years old and management has already said not to expect him this season.
When you’re talking Dodgers baseball, you can NEVER have enough depth.
The opposing team will need an extra SS or two, and extra fans to replace the ones taken out in the parking lot as well.
Take out Fans in Parking Lot???……Veeeery Fuuuunnnny!!!
Bum over Kersh ????…..in your DREAMS!!!
They are both good but I’ll take bumgarner because he is battle tested in the post season
You mean, when it REALLY counts ?
An Angel fan talking about “battle tested” and “proven” in the playoffs? So by your logic, Trout’s .083 BA and .600 OPS in 2014 makes him a borderline minor leaguer. Don’t throw stones when you live in a glass house…
Dont forget bolsinger
they have a lot of depth, I still think they make a move and sell some prospects for a young ace like Fernandez or Salazar.
They arent goin to get fernandez unless it involves 3 or 4 top prospects which dodgers arent goin to part with
I just don’t see that happening. Those teams are asking for a king’s ransom, and this front office seems too committed to preserving the farm. Maybe if we’re able to package Alex Wood to offset the prospect cost, but otherwise I don’t think it happens,
For all the excitement the Diamondbacks generated, they’re still going to finish 3rd.
Also the fact the Greinke is going to be taking up 30-40% of their payroll in the next 6 years
moot point for a 2 billion dollar company. Not sure why you felt that was a necessary point to make.
not really, there has been studies on baseball teams that have players take up over 30% of a teams payroll, they don’t win.
Miller and Greinke > Shark and Cueto > Kazmir an a guy who’s never pitched in the big leagues
Plus, the best offense and defense in the NL.
Leaving Kershaw out for the dodgers side of the comparison was a convenient omission. Good try deadmang.
He was talking about offseason acquisitions.
He was comparing off season acquisitions
I figured that after pressing POST COMMENT. Thanks Guys..
Curious to know your determination of best offense and defense in the NL?
Fangraphs has Giants at #1, Dodgers #2 from last season, offensively.
And Giants #1 defensively last season.
Diamondbacks lost a major guy (Inciarte), Giants lost Aoki. Am I missing something?
second most runs scored in the NL (LOL Coors Field) with the youngest offense in baseball that can only get better. In fact, Inciarte was probably the one guy who would have regressed the most..
Don’t know what Fangraphs is talking about, but D’backs led baseball in pretty much every defensive category.
wRC+: Giants 107, Dodgers 106, D’Backs 96. (Thanks to park adjustments),
FanGraphs Off. rating: Giants 48.7, Dodgers 27.1, D’Backs -15.5.
UZR: Giants 37.2, D’Backs 23.8.
Def: Giants 30.2, D’Backs 19.9
Overall WAR: Giants 32.7, D’Backs 24.8
Keep in mind the term “park adjustment”
Yeah, and SF didn’t make the playoffs and the Dodger got spanked by the Mets. Hows that working for you #1 and #2 or whatever. Stats mean $h*T..Hands on and determination goes along way..
And the Diamondbacks finished third in the NL West? Your point?
Fangraphs team WAR has the Dodgers at 47.9 while the Giants are 39.5 and D-Backs 31..1. Dodgers are by far the best team on paper for what that’s worth.
It’s worth nothing. The healthiest teams usually do the best.
Well yes, but just because they improved a bit more than the Dodgers and Giants did doesn’t mean they surpassed them. Those two teams are still quite a bit better.
Its nice to have depth, but the giants had 7 capable starters last year and look where that took them. Yeah, the dodgers have a better rotation than the giants last year, but depth doesn’t always translate to wins
Capable + Lincecum or Cain haven’t been muttered in the same sentence in many years.
I wouldn’t say Greinke and Miller improves us “a bit”. It’s quite a big leap from having Ruby De LA Rosa as your #2 starter to the 5th.
Greinke, Corbin, Miller, Ray, RDLR + average bullpen + one of the best offenses and defenses in the NL = at least over 86 wins imo.
Unfortunately the offense and defense took a significant hit by slotting Tomas in to replace Inciarte. They really should be looking at a big platoon there and getting Brito the chance to replace Inciarte.
Alex Wood to the Cubs maybe for prospects?
WELL …OK….Now …..Before the Season Begins…..
1. Shoring up the Pitching…….Finally O.K.
2. Shoring up the Pen……………….???
3. 2nd Base……………………………………..???……………………….Bring Back Howie!!!
4. An Outfielder that ain’t broke AND can Hit to go with Joc & …….???
Joc was a lousy hitter. He hit with power but his OBP and AVG was terrible!
He put up a .346OBP for a CFer. I think his OBP skills are fine.
If he balances his Homers through the year…and get’s the average up…he’s our best outfielder, certainly center fielder!
Remember it was only his first year…he deserves a second….
Front office has already said they’re not planning on any more moves to address 2nd base (we’re presumably going with a Kike/Utley platoon at 2nd base).
…they also said they were happy with the existing pitching…two days ago!!!
…they have also said they had no interest in Howie which I fail to understand…he’s heads over the Kiki & Utley Combo …offer him one year…put Kiki in the outfield or as a back-up.
We can’t afford to lose the offense & leadership Howie provides!!!
I care less what they say…it’s always misdirection with them…they lie out their teeth…WHEN the hell are we gonna get our TV back???…..are we really gonna miss the last of Vinnie???
From wat ive read the contract isnt that big cause of issues wit his medical…its heavy incentives though
I found out that the transition of Japanese pitchers to the MLB includes a general ERA increase of about 1.50 (Tanaka and Darvish) so expect Maeda’s ERA in 2015 to be around 3.50.
It also includes TJS during the life of the contract
From what I’ve read from scouts, this is a good pick up. I now think that there will be a trade for a relief pitcher and a power bat….by moving 1 or 2 outfielders and some prospects.
I absolutely trust the Dodgers international scouts, Maeda will be solid win at least 12-14 games. I understand wins aren’t the greatest measure of a pitcher but pitching in dodger stadium will for sure he’ll out that transition of Japanese hitter friendly parks
Good move by the Dodgers. Gives them a solid #2 behind Kershaw.
Kershaw, Ryu, Maeda, Kazmir, Anderson, Wood..McCarthy back in June. Plus Urias, de Leon, Cotton, Lee and Stripling at AAA (no more retreads in OKC).
Good. Question marks, definitely. But that’s part for the course in the off season.
And Bolsinger, oops. If he can’t crack the MLB 25, he might be a AA candidate. Crazy.
And yes, I meant par, before any of you get toolish.
And the rich get richer. I’m done. Have fun guys.
I just wanted to see how he does in the MLB. He cant be much better than Tanaka considering he doesnt have pitches that are comparable to Tanaka’s. Plus he’s 28.
I don’t get all the hype about this guy. His numbers look average in Japan compared to tanaka, dice k, etc.
Shocker, the richest team adds the best remaining pitcher
Wonder how much more the Dodgers are going to spend this off season.
Do they have more to sign the likes of Cespedes / Upton / Gordon?
I think I read an article where the gm (Friedman?) Said that he was mainly going to try and upgrade the pitching staff, and that he was pretty happy with the offense
I sense a trade coming maybe wood and plus for Miller Yankees need a lefty starter wood is pretty good and we have more leniency to trade Miller now that Chapman is a yankee
I’m with you man, I’ve been saying that for the last week! Maybe Cashman can swing Miller for Wood and Montas.
I’d imagine Cashman’s asking price for Miller will be ridiculously high.
Miller is going NO WHERE
You arent getting Miller for anything less than a #3 starter
For the right price he will get traded, Cubs or the Dodgers could make that move
Doubt the Cubs. They seem like they’re happy with where they are at right now.
miller is going to see star wars again
Not as good as Tanaka
Wow 8 years is a long contract for a pitcher who hasn’t pitched in the majors . Dodgers offense is weak so they better stay healthy and keep opposition to 2 runs each game. As a cub fan would have like him for 5 or less years but at 28 and unknowns no way 8 years.
Well it says 5 guaranteed with potential to hit 8 years, which isn’t bad
If dodgers can opt out after 5 than not to bad . Small frame and darvish and tanaka have had injuries 8 years would worry me . Hope he does well for you.
Well hopefully he can be as good as ryu is
And let’s not forget Urias waiting in the wings.
It give the dodgers more time to let urias get work in the minors. He still another year or two away from coming up.
It is pretty much understood tat Urias is still looking at a time line of at least 2017 before he can/will make meaningful, consistent contributions to the major league club. Could we see him for a cup of coffee later this year? Quite possibly, depending on his performance at a full season in AAA. His biggest hurdle isn’t the stuff, or the command, or the poise, it is his durability over the long haul of the season. He has yet to crack even 90 IP over the course of a full season. Now, I love Urias’ potential, but the Dodgers are also slow-playing him for good reason, not trying to put tons of miles on his arm early. Man American Youth pitchers at Urias point in time, these days, have already thrown tons of pitches, leading to significant wear and tear and the increased chance of injury. Urias’ stuff has gotten him to AAA at 19 years old already! And that’s without pitching a ton. My guess is the Dodgers try to stretch him to around 120=140 IP this year at AAA, and give him a strong look next spring training for a rotation spot. De Leon is much more likely to join us at the onset of 2017 than Urias is.
No chance he is this years Syndergaard/Matz?
Also as a Japanese I may be a bit biased but the question now is who will be the ace? Made a or Kershaw?
Thats not even a serious question.
Maeda has proven exactly nothing in MLB. Remember Dice K?
Kershaw is the best pitcher in MLB and has been for years.
Kershaw because he one of the top pitchers in mlb. No one will replace him as ace
It is nice to think Maeda will be good enough in M:BL for it to be is a contest, but it’s Kershaw.
I am Japanese lol.
No Japanese person would be dumb enough to ask a question like this lol.
Kershaw is the best pitcher in the world by a landslide.
Every Japanese baseball fan knows that as well.
Thanks for being racist and screwing up Maeda’s name too.
I am Japanese my butt.
Every Japanese baseball fan knows that Kershaw is the best pitcher in the world.
You spelled his name wrong as well it’s Maeda.
He should be a solid 2-3 for the Dodgers.
It’s not even close.
Japanese pitching stats tend to be super exaggerated because they face much lesser competition. Despite that, Kershaw STILL have similar career stats to Maeda and better recent stats.
McGee and Odorizzi for Puig, Austin Barnes, Kyle Farmer and Cody Bellinger
What purpose does having 9 pitchers have?
Kazmir and Anderson are impending FAs.
McCarthy isn’t going to be healthy, let alone good, until midseason.
Ryu is a question mark.
As is Wood (whose one bad pitch from TJ with those mechanics)
Maeda is unproven.
Plus you can never have too much pitching
And 9 is generous. We’re not considering Urias and De Leon.
Plus, it would be stupid for a team to invest the money they have into a bunch of question marks they are just planning on replacing with a trade in the same offseason.
What would their plan be? Move Ryu, Wood, and Anderson to the bullpen? What a great waste of talent.
I’d assume the package would have to be bigger and include a Holmes type young pitcher. Plus Barnes, Johnson, Thompson, and Bellinger. Not really a need for Odorrizi now. McGee yes, but I wonder what the Pirates will command at the trade deadline for Melancon if they’re out of contention.
This is a great pick up. This is easily the dodgers’s best FA move so far this season. They clearly needed a righty in the rotation, and Maeda will be able to fill that need for years to come. Most likely will have a tough transition to MLB for first month or so, but he’ll settle down quick.
He should be a solid #3 arm, which is really all the Dodgers need him to be. Anything more is just gravy.
Yes, i agree. A #3 is all they need now. Being a righty certainly helps for his.prrsent career. I think he will evolve into Kershaw’s #2 in the next 3 or 4 years.
Yea kinda blown away by it. Obviously I don’t know much about him coming over from another country and all but I have read he was similar in production there to Darvish and/or Tanaka. If he is close to that level the Dodgers just stole him.
What about wood in the bullpen? Any chance?
The only way Wood.wont start for the dodgers is if he.is traded away. He actually is one of the better lefties in baseball, but if he keeps playing like he did last year’s second half, he’ll Be traded,but bullpen isnt a thing.
Wood is one of the best lefties in baseball?
What on Earth are you smoking?
If Wood doesn’t make the opening day roster he’s probably going down OKC as rotation insurance. The Dodgers already have plenty of leftie option in the pen, but fewer backup plans for the rotation.
No one has mentioned that Anderson is made of toilet paper and glue. The fact he got through 2015 in one piece is a miracle. Wagering that he does it again is a sucker’s bet My guess is he goes down for the year with an ingrown toenail in late May.
The Dodgers wagered $15.8M on him. There’s something to that.
15.8 Million on a 1 year contract any team would take that chance on him. If he could be traded a lot of teams would trade for him right now. That is a huge bargain. He is slightly underpaid for 1 year and add on to the fact its 2 year makes the contract even better
Yes well said. he’s past the injury thing and this year has a lot of upside.
It’s possible Dodgers offered QO hoping he wouldn’t take it. I doubt Anderson could get $15 million a year AAV on the open market.
Actually he might. There was a lot of interest. He turned down longer contracts to stay.
im sure someone would have game him a 3 yr deal at 10-15mill a year, especially given next years FAs
Maybe the reason why nobody else has mentioned it is because nobody else is practicing medicine without a license.
He’s really shown he’s past the injury thing.
Finally they have plenty of Starting arms….the question is quality…but O.K.???
NOW for the Bullpen……Kenley & Bupkis…..time to clean house there!!!
Then…how about getting some offense???….we lost Howie Kendrick (I can’t figure out what they had against him?) …….and we are two outfielder’s short of a good outfield???
FINALLY…..wouldn’t it be Good Karma if perchance we could hear AND SEE Vin Scully
in his last at bat???
Hearing the deal is 8 years with 24 million guaranteed. This would include 10-12 million in incentives a year. There would be no opt out clause in the deal.
Do you know this as fact or are u speculating. My first thought Is they would give him an opt out after three years.
The Dodgers brilliantly picked up 2 good pitchers for the price of 1. Letting Grienke go was perfect at 34 mil in his last 3 years. Those type of contracts are killing teams. The Dodgers know this first hand having to deal with Crawford, Ethier and Kemp. Cueto was for example 13-11 last year posting poor second half numbers, 20mil per? I think that’s a mistake. . Grienke will not duplicate last year. The Dodgers replaced their 19 game winner with a 15 in Maeda or Kazmir. and have as insurance to the rotation one of those 2 instead of just Grienke. Meanwhile LA is loaded with prospects. With a new batting coach and Manager (anything is better than McGwire) Pederson and Puig will be back. La is easily at 95 + wins.
Wasn’t it when Nolan Ryan was traded from the Angels, the GM said two projected 10 game winners were just as good as one 20 game winner???? …in fact One 20 Game Winner plus a 10 Game Winner was much better!!!
Greinke ain’t Sandy Koufax but he’s pretty damn good! He will be producing some very good seasons barring injuries…the chances are two “subpar stars” aren’t gonna make up for that! If they had signed at least one STAR…then I could agree.
Only the Dodgers could sign a deal like this. SO much payroll uncertainty. Maeda could earn anywhere from $3m to $15m in any given year. Yikes.
If he makes $15 mill in a season, then it likely means he pitched well in that season.
I would think the incentives will be primarily based off of innings pitched.
That’s a Cy Young winner in Japan, their best. Top level Japan Pitchers have done well in the US.
All of the risk is on the player…it is a brilliant contract for the club.
MLB shouldn’t allow contracts like this.
Lol why not?
There should be way more contracts like this. Earn your keep.
should only allow contracts like this*
The new commenting format sucks when there are a lot of comments. I really wish they would bring back arrows. They don’t need a down arrow but at least an up arrow or a recommendation star.
I like the Orioles to go after Wood. They need a lefty to replace Chen. I don’t know the needs of the Dodgers in the minors but maybe DJ Stewart (last year’s first round pick) and Tanner Scott (stud pitcher that throws 100 and recently shined in the AFL) ~OR~ Dariel Alvarez (outfielder with one of best arms in the minors) and Jomar Reyes (young Cuban SS stud).
This is probably going to come out wrong but the Dodgers really don’t need any of the O’s prospect at least the ones they are wiling to give up. Givens would probably be the only need the O’s fulfill. The one thing I can see is the Dodgers matching up to dump an OF contract or two ( the latter is a mere dream) with the O’s. I can see the Dodgers asking for givens for a little bigger trade.
You are listening to all national information that inaccurately gets passed around if you think the Dodgers wouldn’t be interested in any of the Os prospects. The Orioles have plenty of prospects that get inquired on for all kinds of players the entire off-season. Just cause you haven’t heard of them all doesn’t mean they arent any good ones. Guys like Trey Mancini, Tanner Scott, Chris Lee, Mychel Givens, Tyler Wilson are all prospects that are all major league ready and expected to help the team this season. That doesn’t include the ones u know, Hunter Harvey and Dylan Bundy which while injured have very high ceilings. You are over rating the Dodgers players, the Os have plenty of pieces to get Alex Wood certainly.
Ive actually heard of all of them. Prospect information is quite entertaining. I wasn’t even thinking Bundy especially with no options left. The outfield and 1b prospect is actually pretty strong, especially when Calhoun has to move off 2nd. Reyes isn’t getting moved for a midd rotation starter esp with wright and Wilson potentially. I’m truly not overrating any prospects. Which by the way I mentioned Givens. But the simple fact is Wood although valuable won’t fetch the top flight prospects. But there are needs that the Dodgers need to address short and long term. The first issue is the bullpen. If they can push their current relievers back an inning that would solve a lot of issues. I would love if they can get Givens, but a straight up trade would probably have the O’s hanging up first. Which is why I think the trade would have to be bigger. Dodgers have enough outfielders and can move both big contracts and Guerrero so Alvarez is just a Thompson type (Thompson’s ability to stay in CF makes him more valuable). I just think we misunderstood each other. Nothing is going to happen though until OF and Davis market are cleared up.
Teams might prefer to trade for players who fill an immediate need, but they don’t have to. Wood I don’t see being available until midseason, or at least until they know the status of Ryu and perhaps McCarthy. Without Wood they really don’t have anyone to cover a gap in the rotation.
Padres get a little too much.
Sox got hosed in this deal haha
This is a great deal for the Dodgers! coming from a Cards fan. It’s a huge win, $25M over eight? At worst, he’s league average, but likely has a higher ceiling, being one of the very best from Japan. I actually think LA have done more than well enough to stay competitive with the Giants and D’backs. They’re filling two spots of potentially high-quality pitching with almost half the salary that it would have taken to sign Greinke. That’s big plus, considering the previous questions the rotation had.
The amount of effort you put into this is impressive. It won’t happen.
Dodgers will take the division and crap out in the playoffs, Giants will get in as a Wild Card and probably go all the way. Dbacks will underachieve. Same as it ever was.
I think you spent way to much time and thought into this LOL And then I spend TOOOOOO much time in reading it.
I’d fire my agent if I were Maeda.
Yeah he does get some money for 8 years but the rest is all incentive based?
A pitcher could blow out his arm at anytime.
Why take all the risk when you’ve got some leverage against your suitor?
I’m sure more teams would’ve jumped in if they knew he’d sign this kinda contract.
It’s nice to see a guy bet on himself but betting too much on yourself isn’t smart.
Ain’t smart at all.
Who are you to say what is smart? We don’t know the full terms of the contract yet, but it’s pretty clear Maeda wanted a stable longterm situation on the West Coast, which he achieved, and at the same time, he got an unprecedented number of guaranteed years (AFAIK) for a pitcher.
I am having a very difficult time understanding just what it is you want…other than a return to spending large sums of money on players you have read the most about in the paper and watched on TV.
The most recent 20-25 years of Dodger history (prior to Guggenheim’s rescue of this once high performing franchise) have been embarrassing and a performance failure. Have you learned nothing from the past 30 years of FA signings? You seem to want a return to the mindless, short-sighted (and lazy) thinking of FO leadership ushered in by FOX (Claire, Lasorda, Malone) and continued by Colletti during the corrupt McCourt years. Spending enormous sums of stupid money on big-name players whose best days are clearly behind them is just not sustainable even for the franchise that is most willing to spend. The data over the past 30 years provides overwhelming evidence that multi-year commitments to players in their 30s are poor investments.
I’m sorry; but you seem to be so representative of the LA Times, mainstream media-fed thinking of Dodger fans, obsessed with “buying stars”. Just what do Bill Plaschke and Steve Dullbeck really know about building an MLB roster? An analytical approach that suggests doing anything other than what ex-ballplayers on ESPN and the MLB network tell you your team should do is viewed with suspicion or even contempt.
This FO is committed to being competitive EVERY YEAR. Unlike the most recent examples of foolish behavior in Toronto and Arizona, trading years of out-year competitiveness for a short-term and high-risk pursuit of a WS championship, Friedman and Zaidi are laying the foundation for long-term (year-after-year) sustainable excellence.
The Maeda contract is the most recent example of what this FO is capable of doing to manage risk…very little downside risk exists here. Any idiot would rather have Zack Greinke or David Price for the next two years over an unproven Japanese pitcher…even the very best japanese pitcher–which Maeda appears to be. There is considerable upside to this guy. His age and recent performance are promising. But there are no guarantees. To get Greinke or Price the Dodgers would have had to tie up $140-150 million from 2018-22. I understand this is not your money and so you seem to have no problem being annoyed over the fact that FO did not spend this money in the way you wanted. What I would ask you to consider is the trade-off in 2018-22 that would have been required IF they had spent that $140 million now. Give the FO some credit for playing hard ball and taking advantage of Maeda’s desire to play in LA. The $50-75 million he saved on this deal is going to get spent elsewhere to improve the roster. Until you see evidence that this organization is really reducing its financial commitment to improving the talent base, please stop the whining. The evidence is pretty clear that these guys will spend money, they are just not going to throw it away on short term strategies that have been proven to fail
Nor Cal Blue…
My complaint was & is still……That the new ownership started out like a house afire…to get Gonzalez (who I like) they spend a Zillion Bucks on 40 other players Boston dumps on us including the injury kid Crawford who is still screwing up our outfield. They claim Money is no object and wastes it like water…
Every Talking Head says the Dodgers have NO budget and will sign every star out there!!!
They raise the ticket, hot dogs & beer,
parking and toilet paper prices……then they make a deal to keep TV away from us…probably because …even though they have sellouts at every game…they wanna make even more from charging people standing on the hills and looking into Dodger Stadium???
SO THEY GOT THE BUCKS!!! Now get us INTO ONE BIG FAT WORLD SERIES …AND THEN…they can build for the future!!!…
Also a word of advice to the front office…If you don’t want all your fans to be pissed at you (aside from the TV debacle)…Tell then the truth YOU ARE NOT BUYING BIG STARS….you’re going on the CHEAP…Don’t lead us to believe you are bidding on Babe Ruth and give us some unknown Cubano!!!
The front office or the owner don’t give a rats ass about uneducated fans like you since they are 100X smarter than you. Thank God you ain’t the GM of the Dodgers.
The front office and the owner don’t give a rats ass about uneducated fans like you since they are 100X smarter than you. Thank God you ain’t the GM of the Dodgers.
The Dodgers front office have openly talked about the youth movement, spending smarter and not pouring money into contracts that will end up as albatrosses.
Have you been listening? I don’t think so.
One correction from your rant: this new ownership and front office was not responsible for the Gonzalez/Crawford/Beckett acquisitions. That deal was made wholly under their predecessors (McCourt/Colletti).
No idea what this has to do with my comment on Maeda. Nothing, as far as I can tell.
I am representative of myself not anyone else, so if you want to talk to me, comment on something I actually said. I will never respond to “people like you” types of comments. Thank you for your consideration, assuming I get any.
“The Dodgers front office have openly talked about the youth movement, spending smarter and not pouring money into contracts that will end up as albatrosses. Have you been listening? I don’t think so.”
UP YOURS CAM….I’ve been listening since before you were born!!! I see their mouths moving but BS coming out!!! They say We Can Outspend Everyone & then… We need to Save Bucks….Then they Don’t Spend on Stars but WASTE LOTS of money on used up Hasbeens!!!
Who’s Not Listening???
WATCH WHAT THEY DO…Not What They Say!!!
Where’s Our TV???
Solid points, norcalblue.
While appreciative of this blog’s content (and some of its commenters’ perspective), far too many voices here base their knee jerk analysis on what the good ol’ boy ex-jocks spout on mainstream sports news outlets. Not to mention the abysmal LA Times scribes. It’s lazy and adds nothing to the conversation.
While none of us here are privy to the internal conversations the team’s front office holds, it’s fairly clear that they’re attempting to establish a winning culture and pipeline that will be self-sustaining for future seasons. While not the sexy and headline grabbing overspending-on-a-player’s-past-performance approach hailed by many talking heads (and practiced by all of the former Dodger GMs you list over the past 27 mostly lackluster years), I have some faith that the process being undertaken by the front office will create a sustainable winning product on the field for years to come while developing a stable of assets that can be flipped when the time comes to make an informed (and not kneejerk) trade for a more established player entering his prime (as opposed to leaving it).
What this analysis misses completely is that a “winning culture” doesn’t count for a hill of beans if it doesn’t produce winning seasons. Baseball teams are in the entertainment business and the fans are the customers for that entertainment. Winning is the only meaningful way results can be measured by fans. This simple, basic fact is missing from about 99% of the analysis I read in places like this. So yes, what ball clubs do is very much about “grabbing headlines,” if only because winning has that exact result, and winning the only measurement of success that actually matters for a game. So this fan will continue to judge the Dodgers ownership by the results they produce for us, the paying customers, and not on faith or some other obtuse abstraction.
I actually don’t disagree with you on many of your points, BlueSkyLA, and don’t think we’re far apart.
Mainly, yes, sports are mainly for the entertainment of fans (while providing the livelihood for employees of a team, of course).
True, headlines are derived from winning championships. They are also derived from a team signing a player for tens of millions of dollars in the offseason. Or an athlete’s off-the-field (mostly dubious or criminal) activities. All of these cases are part of the entertainment value you mention. Just watch a segment of Sportscenter or a ten-minute block on any of the sports networks to see the variety of forms the entertainment you mention manifests itself.
I misused the term “winning culture” in my comment and it’s clear when examining the entire context of what I wrote. In fact, the following word I used in that sentence was “pipeline” and that’s the main point of what I wrote.
See, I’m working under the assumption that October is a very different animal than the six month regular season. Evidence shows that the team that spends the most money doesn’t always win their division, let alone thrive in the playoffs (the Marlins and Red Sox are two recent examples this current decade but there are many more). Evidence also shows that a successful regular season team can run into a buzzsaw built around two hot arms or a hot bullpen and a ragtag group of hitters and make early playoff exits (see the successful Giants and Royals from the past few years).
Point is, and bringing it back to the Dodgers in the here and now: this front office seems to be buying into the formula that winning in October won’t happen if the previous regime’s approach of spending big and compromising roster flexibility continues. Sure, the team has garnered headlines for winning in the regular season and making the playoffs recently but, as you rightly state, it isn’t enough for a fanbase that has waited almost thirty years for a World Series here in LA (or over a hundred in Chicago, for that matter).
We might or might now agree on the moves and player evaluation decisions made by the current front office, and yes, we have to gauge success based on winning World Series titles (since LA’s recent regular season successes aren’t enough), but I think we have to also understand that this front office seems to be constructing a team built around a pipeline of depth and multiple pieces entering their prime years (instead of overpaid and roster-clogging players leaving them). They’re betting that this approach will have a better chance of success in October, where deeper (and yes, sometimes luckier) clubs have found ways to win titles.
@ladfan: I take most of your points as well. An awful lot of people on these boards argue for “successful business models” and the like, as if we should be rooting for increased corporate profits instead of wins for our hometown ball club. Why any fan would do that continues to mystify me, but it has become depressingly common.
As for the pipeline, I give the current ownership pretty high grades. Probably a B+. Not higher because I know they fired pretty much everyone on the scouting and development side recently so it will take some time to know whether they’ve rehired well. They also let Logan White go, which I am pretty sure is a mistake.
On trades, so far I give them a C-, and I believe this is grading on a curve. We all knew what the team needed last July. They tried but simply failed to execute. Pretty clearly they did not get a good return on Gordon, and probably not for Kemp either. Maybe that grade will improve over time.
On free agent signings, they get an incomplete. Whether or not you believe that the Dodgers succeeded by failing to sign key players it remains to be seen if that was the right course of action, assuming the goal is actually winning, not balancing the corporate books.
The Cubs are the cautionary tale here, are they not? So long as the fans keep shuffling through the turnstiles, and the team’s media income is guaranteed, why should ownership worry too much about the on-field product? Just good enough is just good enough, and costs a lot less. In strictly business terms, they’d be foolish to spend more to make their product than the customers are demanding. As one of the paying customers, I refuse to back down on my demands.
I agree Blue Sky’s…
Why would I care about Dodger’s Profits???…….They keep raising all their prices and Dumped Free TV…. When did they care about us?
A Great Team equals Big Bucks…it’s all about business!!!…However a good or mediocre (not great) team can also generate Big Bucks….which seems to be the Current Dodgers Approach …”The best way to maximize profits and F**k the fans”!!!
Dude I’m pro players getting as much as they can because they I think they deserve to be happy. Yes maybe he’s a noble man who wants to prove himself but if I was an agent and wanted the best for my client. I’d at least give him a run down on the average mlb salary because he as a free agent is guaranteed less than that. You’re right that maybe he just wanted to live on the west coast badly but if I were his agent I’d still try to get a couple of teams involved to gain some leverage in the negotiations.
I’m not for or against what players get and wasn’t looking for nobility or anything of the sort. If Maeda didn’t want this deal all he had to do was say no and play another season in Japan. The idea that he was somehow cheated is pretty farfetched.
Maybe I’m being a bit too harsh considering the elbow issue but still the Wasserman Group got Cesar Ramos who had a 2.75 era in the majors a minor league deal as well. Maybe Cesar was okay with this as well but can’t help but question the groups ability to get the most for their players.
What leverage exactly?
Being one of the best Japanese pitchers to cross the sea? It’s not like we haven’t seen guys come and succeed right away from Japan.
Nomo was the first guy to come over. Then came Sasaki / Ichiro / Ishi / Matsui. After that there were guys like Kuroda / Iguchi / Saito / Otsuka / Johjima. Lately they have the likes of Tazawa / Uehara / Aoki / Darvish / Tanaka still playing well. Jut saying that there’s enough of a track record of top guys doing well. Why can’t he get something or even half of what these guys made is my question.
When a team sees something concerning in a MRI any leverage you think you have goes completely out of the window
My god you’re a psycho.
Don’t give negative feedback but read it.
Don’t look at advanced metrics because it’s lopsided.
Dude start a blog or something and just leave the site.
This isn’t your playground.
I thought Maeda was a good signing for the Dodgers until I read about the elbow. Dodgers better watch out – if Maeda has elbow issues and Kazmir’s arm problems resurface (I’m not convinced he didn’t have them when he could barely get to the 5th inning in Aug and Sep last year) then they will have two contracts worth $73M guaranteed total for two pitchers with potentially bum arms. Not to say that these guys won’t pitch, but how long appears a real uncertainty.
Isn’t uncertainty the name of the game?
Are the Giants “certain” that Samardzija won’t lead the league in hits, runs, and HR allowed again?
Are the Giants also “certain” that Cueto won’t have a 6.49 ERA after August 15 again?
Of course not, but they could also turn out to be great signings. No one knows.
That was my point too, more or less.
As far as Maeda is concerned this seems like the kind of low-risk, modest reward signing that small market teams pursue because they can’t afford to take bigger risks for higher rewards.
The Giants and Reds I think are certain that there aren’t “lots of physical red flags” with Samardzija or Cueto. If I didn’t know better it looks like Friedman is desperate to show he has done something, even taking risks on pitchers with potential bum elbows and arms. Just be aware that in addition to the concerns on Maeda, anyone who saw Kazmir pitch in August and Sep would tell you that the guy was struggling – he attributed it to mechanics, but even after he supposedly fixed the mechanics he was still struggling. My guess is that he has an arm issue. Who knows maybe both will go on to pitch 200 innings this year.
Thanks doc. Lots of stuff here I am sure the Dodgers did not know.
Quick, someone call Seattle!
FWIW the Dodgers just announced a one year contract with Brandon Beachy. Apparently Major League.
Baseball on Earth
According to the report, Brandon Beachy gets 250K additional bonus if he makes the opening day roster, which leads me to believe it is not a major league deal. I think the Dodgers is probably the only club that would guarantee that much money, only to be rotten in the minors.
I’m telling people this. The deal will fall through just like every other deal the Dodgers have tried to make this offseason.
they already said they will announce the deal tomorrow
I guess you were wrong!
Just saw that MRI showed irregularities in right elbow- must be the reason for the discount
Maeda will receive $150,000 each year for making the opening day active 25-man roster.
He will receive $1 million for each of 15 and 20 starts, and $1.5 million for each of 25, 30 and 32 starts.
Maeda each year will earn $250,000 for each of 90, 100, 110, 120, 130, 140, 150, 160, 170, 180 and 190 innings pitched, and $750,000 for 200 innings.
In addition, Maeda receives a $1 million bonus each time he is traded.
They’re going to have to hang a taxi meter around his neck to keep track of all these numbers.
If there is one thing the Dodgers FO knows extremely well, it is numbers.
Man they must really like him. They keep signing. This is like the 4th time
They signed him this month
This has to be one of the most complex and unusual contracts in the history of MLB. By midseason, practically every time he steps on the mound will be a toll call.
Yeah, this is far more incentive based than any contract I’ve heard of before. If anything I’m a little surprised the union allowed this. I would have figured they would have demanded a little more stability. There’s a lot of little ways the Dodgers could maneuver him out of some money if he isn’t an ace.
Has the union ever squawked the terms of a player contract? If so I am not remembering it. I see it as a potential distraction. He could collect his start #15 bonus in the first inning of a game and his 100 inning bonus later in the game. Everybody will be talking about how much he’s getting for any given game or inning, and how could the player not have it on his mind too?
There’s never been a big deal made but there’s been a few times top free agents have been strongly encouraged to take the highest contract value over a slightly smaller one in a preferred area in order to drive up the market.
I would love to see this incentive based contract to set a precedent for all contracts. To many players getting paid not to play baseball. Don’t play don’t get paid, should be the norm.
It never will become the norm. Maeda clearly valued longterm stability and remaining in one city on the West Coast over guarantees. Most players are more willing to sign for shorter terms knowing they can maximize their earnings over that time if they are prepared to move on to the highest bidder every few years.
But the opposite logic does bring up the question of why do teams like the Angels get 3 legendary seasons out of Mike Trout while paying him less than $2M. Or simply in less extreme terms, every player is under team control for 6 years and for 3 of them the team can set the player’s salary no matter how good they are.
Every contract is a gamble at a price set by market that’s just as much about perceived value as actual value. Sure you get your epic flops like Vernon Wells but you also get your $2MM NL MVPs as well.
Honestly, the terms of this agreement, though complicated, aren’t too shabby. You are looking at a minimum $3 annual value, and a maximum $11.15 million annual value. All told when you are looking at a total potential commitment (including the posting fee) of $110 million, for a pitcher, who in Japan posted similar stats to Tanaka (minus the gaudy strikeout number), performed better than Kuroda, and is coming to the Dodgers 5 years younger than our most recent successful Japanese pitching import when he came over: Kuroda. His K/9 and BB/9 rates in Japan was similar to Kuroda’s (even better in fact), gave up fewer homers, better ERA, better WHIP, etc. So why is everyone so pessimistic about his outlook? I’m seeing everywhere most people saying he won’t be better than a 4.00 ERA pitcher, who will give up a good amount of homers, without striking more than 7.0 per 9IP. Honestly, he projects better than Kuroda, but not as good as Tanaka or Darvish (primarily because they have better pure “stuff”). He has good control, his fastball has movement, he has a plus slider, and potential plus change. That combo will serve him well over here. If he lands somewhere around a Chan Ho Park (circa 1997-2001) or Kuroda type pitcher in terms of performance, that will be well worth the contract we’ve given him.
Not everybody is pessimistic by any means, but like any other player who comes to MLB from a very different environment, it will be about adapting, and how that works out is difficult to predict. I’m a lot less concerned about the whether the Dodgers get value for dollar out of Maeda than I am him pitching well enough to establish a place near the top of the rotation.
Agreed. Not everyone is pessimistic, but it seems like there is a heck of a lot of people not expecting anything more than what I stated, and in fact believe that to be his ceiling. As I said, if he ends up as a Hiroki Kuroda/Chan Ho Park type pitcher, I will be more than satisfied. Heck, even an Iwakuma would be great! Pitching with those kinds of numbers for our rotation would project as an enviable #3, and especially #4 in our rotation (if Ryu returns to form). He will have to adapt, however the guys on FanGraphs did a great analysis on him back in November I believe. They said that while his pure stuff isn’t nearly as impressive as say a Tanaka, Darvish or even Dice-K, he has good command of his pitches, and where he lacks punch in those pitches, he has great depth to them. Case and point, they stated that his change-up has phenomenal drop to it and if he were to utilize it here in the states, combined with his slider that they compared favorably to Sergio Romo’s, he will be a solid pitcher.
Sure, I guess my main concern is who is #2 in this rotation. If not Maeda, then ____? The Dodgers have a lot of 3-5 options but no obvious 2-3 solution unless Ryu comes back really strong or Maeda turns out to be highly adaptable.
Blue Sky…they have NO NUMBER TWO…..a couple of 3’s & 4’s…get used to it!!!
I’ve said this before…When Nolan Ryan was Dumped they said he could be replaced by a couple of 9 Game Winners… IT DIDN’T HAPPEN..He Couldn’t Be Replaced…Neither will Zack Greinke…He’s gonna have 3 or 4 more great years and we have Bupkis!!!…Now it’s too late….
Let’s move on to Replacing Chapman if possible!!!….then 2nd Base & fix the outfield!!!
It all hinges on a healthy Ryu. Ryu is by far and away a #2 when right. No one knows what Maeda is going to be. Kazmir and co make a nice mid of the rotation options. It all hinges on Ryu and health. Then again all the injury issues from last you you have to hope this year is the opposite and a healthy rotation. As we’ve seen the Dodgers have an ace already and two aces don’t guarantee a championship especially with a patched up 3-5. Let’s face it Grienke wasn’t going on short rest if Dodger got further into the post season (he even spoke of it). Recent history has shown you need dominance from you ace and/or a shut down bullpen in the playoffs. The Dodgers are one bullpen piece away. That piece doesn’t need to be a second closer either. It’s this simple Puig needs to be healthy doesn’t need to be a superstar. Pederson needs to take that next step. Too many moving parts in his swing that need to be smoothed out. Let’s hope this offseason was it. If he had a monster 2nd half he probably wouldn’t had to fix the holes in his swing. He was knocked down a peg and had to address it. Kike will be fine at 2nd. Johnson will hit but can he grow into a competent 2nd baseman or does he need to be transitioned. It’s going to be an interesting act managing Ryu and Maeda to get them a little extra rest. The Dodgers will be fine and presumably more young talent to make those complimentary moves at the deadline. They aren’t going to be able to move CC or Guerrero maybe Ethier. So both are destined for bench roles. Their need will be a leadoff guy. A Inciarte/Thompson platoon could conceivably be intriguing granted the Braves and Dodgers were able to match up again.
I find it funny that Ryan is you main comp. I can also bring up guys where contracts have failed and failed miserably. I can think of maybe Mussina who excelled through his mega mega contract as an older age. Hindsight is 20/20. Yeah people feel the pain that the Dbacks swooped in. So where does the fact that Grienke admitted the Dbacks didn’t allow him to check with the Dodgers to match come into play. Everyone also forgets to mention every spring training when Grienke gets shut down for about a week or two because of his elbow. A cortisone shot is needed to help him. Uncertainty with pitchers is all but synonymous. I love the over reaction to this judge within the offseason frame. It’s this simple prices for everything will go up next year. why, simple supply and demand. People are going to show up point and fact. Fact is Dodgers will probably be paying about 270 in player payroll next year (including the threshold tax), 150 mill in just sheer tax on international players, 14 mill to rent the parking lots from frank McCourt( which I despise but that move was pure genius for McCourt), probably upwards of what 20-30 mill in revenue sharing. $464-474 million is quite a nice chunk. You wonder why the eventually want to get younger and compete within. That not including upper management, employees, and others. I am not a Fo lap dog. I’m a realist. I realize that every model before did not work. Build from within like they’ve started too and wait to see results. I would love to have Grienke back but Grienke with the three backend guys last year was not going to win. They also weren’t going to win when the “over priced clogs” couldn’t knock out the starters when they were on the ropes. It’s just all laughable because the Royals are here to stay for the next two years and their aces were………….yeah that bullpen. Complimentary pieces will be there at the deadline. The Dodgers will be fine. If they don’t get a piece or to then, then go ahead and go ape crap then if results don’t follow.
Overreact much? For much of the season last year, Kazmir was pitching like a #2, but got fatigued and went to a very hitter friendly ballpark in Houston, and only really had a bad end of August through September (tiring out a little bit maybe is a possibility). Even still, he ended the year with a 3.10 ERA and you can clearly see that his stats were affected by the park he switched to when his HR/FB ratio jumped over 4% from the 1st to 2nd half. Of course of Ryu is healthy, he profiles as a #2. Additionally, Kazmir has pitched well enough in the last two and a half years to warrant a good #2 profile. We just happen to have been spoiled over the last three years by having our #2 pitcher be literally a second ace. Greinke, as everyone said, would have been a #1 on pretty much any other team that didn’t have someone like Kershaw fronting it. This year our rotation is far deeper and has the potential to be much better. Our bullpen, outside of the the disasters that were Jim Johnson and Chin-Hui Tsao, in the second half was quite solid. 3.47 ERA (drops from 4.33). Our core relief pitchers (Jansen, Hatcher, Garcia, Howell) all posted ERA’s south of 3.00. Honestly, we are looking at a solid bullpen that yes, could use another piece or two to really lock it down, but as of right now is solid enough.
A dead thread but FWIW I mainly agree with what you say here. The caveat I’d add is the Dodgers made the postseason mainly on the strength of that 1-2 punch that admittedly spoiled us. The rest of the rotation was basically break-even. Maybe they will win a lot more of those 3-5 starter games this year than last and make up for the loss of a second ace, but that depends heavily on what they get from Ryu and Maeda. The setup spot is still a weak link and offensively questions can be found at virtually every position.
Blue Sky…I agree with you…..my real complaint has been that the Dodgers keep raising all the prices and we have NO TV for the foreseeable future…then all the “Talking Heads” keep saying the Dodgers have unlimited resources and can sign everyone…& we end up with the DREGS!!!
Finally one of the Sportswriters wrote recently…the Dodgers have cut their budget to $200 Million and are gonna keep it that way…then WHY doesn’t the GM come out honestly and say YES we are working within a budget and ARE NOT going after high priced talent stop the promises!!! …in which case why are they raising the prices on everything each year???
This is L.A. not some backwater Texas town…WE WANT & NEED A WORLD SERIES…it’s been too long…they should go “Balls Out” to get it for us and Get our TV back for Vinnie’s final year….then they can try to cut back or whatever their master plan is!!!