JAN 20: Detroit has announced the signing.
JAN. 18: While many expected the Tigers to be finished with their offseason spending, owner Mike Ilitch reminded naysayers on Monday evening to never count the Tigers out of the free-agent market, as Detroit reportedly agreed to a six-year, $132.75MM with free-agent outfielder Justin Upton. The 28-year-old Reynolds Sports Management client will reportedly receive an opt-out clause after the second year of the deal, which is said to pay him an evenly distributed $22.125MM per year. Upton also reportedly secured a partial (twenty-team) no-trade clause in the deal, which does not contain any deferred money, unlike some of the other major deals signed this offseason and in recent years.
Upton will join what was an already imposing middle-of-the-order grouping in Detroit, adding another right-handed bat to join the likes of Miguel Cabrera, J.D. Martinez, Ian Kinsler and the switch-hitting Victor Martinez. That quintet should give opposing left-handed pitcher fits, though each is plenty formidable against right-handed pitching as well. Across the past three years, which he’s split between the Braves and Padres, Upton has batted .262/.344/.470 and averaged 27 home runs per season. While he’s not a standout defensive player in the outfield, he’s a solid enough defender in left field, where Ultimate Zone Rating pegged him at +2 runs and Defensive Runs Saved valued him at +8 in 2015. His addition should lead to either a Cameron Maybin/Anthony Gose platoon in center field or an outfield alignment of Upton-Maybin-Martinez (J.D., that is), with Gose serving as a fourth outfielder. His signing and the presence of Martinez on the other corner have effectively blocked prospects Tyler Collins and Steven Moya for the foreseeable future.
By signing Upton, the Tigers will surrender their second draft pick of the offseason. Detroit’s No. 9 overall selection is protected under the collective bargaining agreement, but the team already parted with its second-round pick to add right-hander Jordan Zimmermann to the rotation, so they’ll forfeit their third-round pick — currently projected to be the 85th in the draft, per Baseball America — to sign Upton. The Padres, who extended a qualifying offer to Upton that was ultimately rejected, will receive a compensatory pick between at the end of the first round of the 2016 draft.
Of course, the addition of Upton is not without long-term payroll ramifications. While there’s every possibility that Upton will opt out of the contract in two years’ time (assuming that he is healthy and productive from 2016-17), there’s also the risk that his production declines or injuries lead to him opting into the remaining four years. Considering the fact that the Tigers owe Cabrera $218MM through 2023, Verlander $112MM through 2019, Zimmermann $110MM through 2020 and Victor Martinez $54MM through 2018, Upton’s contract adds another risk-laden deal to the ledger in the name of present-day winning. Those payroll concerns are likely a large part of the reason that GM Al Avila said earlier this offseason that further outfield additions (and, in fact, significant additions in general) were largely unlikely. However, owner Mike Ilitch has long been one of baseball’s freest spenders, and he candidly told the media following Zimmermann’s press conference that he “doesn’t care” about spending money. It’s quite possible — especially considering the potential luxury tax ramifications it carries — that this contract is more of an ownership decision than one from the club’s top baseball operations decision-makers.
By my crude calculations, the Upton signing will push the Tigers to just shy of $176MM worth of luxury-tax considerations in terms of only the team’s guaranteed contracts. With arbitration-eligible players not even factored into that equation, it seems quite likely that Detroit will incur penalties, which, as FOX’s Ken Rosenthal notes (on Twitter), would mean a 17.5 percent tax on every dollar over $189MM as a first-time offender of the luxury tax penalty.
Risk aside, the Tigers’ lineup is now among baseball’s most formidable collections of hitters, though it’s admittedly a right-leaning bunch. Upton is a lifetime .271/.352/.473 hitter, and while he has yet to develop into the consistent superstar-level performer that many forecast in his prospect days, he’s a consistent three- to four-win player, depending on one’s preferred version of WAR, and arguably has some upside remaining in the tank. Upton, after all, posted an enormous .289/.369/.529 batting line with 31 home runs back in 2011, and while that season did come in Arizona’s hitter-friendly Chase Field, he’s still young enough that it’s not out of the question for him to replicate that level of production. Even if his offense is more commensurate with his career batting line or his post-2011 production, however, Upton’s age makes him a likely candidate to maintain his status as a well-above-average bat in his new environs.
The Upton contract figures to be the final significant piece for the Tigers this offseason. Added to the signings of Zimmermann (five years, $110MM), Mike Pelfrey (two years, $16MM), Mark Lowe (two years, $11MM), Mike Aviles (one year, $2MM) and Jarrod Saltalamacchia (one year, $507.5K), that makes a total of $270.26MM spent on free agents alone, to say nothing of the guaranteed payroll added in trades to acquire Francisco Rodriguez ($9.5MM), Justin Wilson ($1.525MM) and Maybin ($5.5MM). All told, the Tigers have spent a staggering $288.78MM on upgrades to their roster this season.
As for Upton, he’ll receive a sizable guaranteed payday which, while coming up a bit short of the $147MM projected by MLBTR at the onset of free agency, also includes a highly valuable opt-out clause that allows him to re-enter the open market heading into his age-30 campaign. At that point, Upton could be in line for a similar or even greater amount to the guarantee he just received — particularly if either the market or his bat takes a notable step forward — while having already banked $44.25MM in his two years with the Tigers. In examining the rash of opt-out clauses that have been given out this winter — Upton joins Jason Heyward, David Price, Johnny Cueto, Scott Kazmir, Wei-Yin Chen and Ian Kennedy as players to receive an opt-out provision — MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz estimated that such clauses could carry a theoretical monetary value as high as $20MM. Suffice it to say, suggestions that Upton may ultimately need to settle for a one-year deal (or any form of short-term pact) proved to be something of an overreaction to his quiet market. The sizable deal serves as a reminder that free agents of this caliber will nearly always get paid, even if their market isn’t apparent (a concept Jeff Todd an I discussed on last week’s MLBTR Podcast, in which we noted Detroit as a possible landing spot for a high-priced outfielder). While the temptation to say that this signing further shrinks the market for Yoenis Cespedes certainly exists, I’d counter by saying that Upton’s deal should suggest that eventually, Cespedes will get the long-term deal he seeks, even if his ultimate landing spot doesn’t currently appear to be an ideal fit.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports first reported talks between the two sides. Jon Heyman reported that the two sides were nearing a deal and that Upton would be getting a long-term deal (links to Twitter). USA Today’s Bob Nightengale reported the agreement, pending a physical. Rosenthal was the first to tweet the six-year term, and Nightengale broke news of the $132.75MM guarantee (via Twitter). Rosenthal reported the opt-out clause (via Twitter), and SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo was first to mention the no-trade clause (Twitter link). Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press reported the evenly distributed breakdown of the deal (Twitter link). Nightengale reported that there were no deferrals (Twitter link). Heyman reported that Upton’s partial no-trade clause allows him to block trades to 20 teams (Twitter link).
remember the Tigers are still paying Prince Fielder a lot of money to play for the Texas Rangers. They make some odd decisions up there.
What is odd about signing the best outfielder of the offseason at age 28 and then putting him in a position (LF) that only had a projected replacement level projection?
Not sure why people are not understanding that this is in effect a two year deal: Age 28 and Age 29 seasons. A huge bargain for those two years if he opt out (which he likely will).
Also, the whole point of the Fister deal was to make up for the loss of the Fielder trade. They saved well over $40MM in trading Fister to the Nationals.
Once he strikes out 200 times and hits 230 with 15 HR in 2017 I think he will opt into this deal. The Tigers will then be paying a ton for a bum. I bet he is very average this year. he is not worth that kind of money. What a joke. Go tribe!
There is nobody in their right mind now who wouldn’t trade the last two years of Fister for 6 years of Robbie Ray and Ian Krol and $40 million. Some people just can’t admit they were wrong.
Well that escalated quickly…
For all we know the Tigers were negotiating with Justin Upton’s agent for months.
You don’t think it was 8 minutes?
Literally, all the Tigers had to do was call, say 132 over 6 get a yes and be done. Lol
ROFL it’s so bizarre you know it could be true
joekelly is my hero
I guess Upton had a trident
Yes omg let’s go baby tigers r going all the way this year #heatup
It’s probably a 125 mil contract
Even MORE. Talk about paying on past performance…
He’s only 28. This is the kind of player you DO want to overpay for.
one who can be good for more than a few months in a given season?
All power hitters are like that. Cespedes is far worse. Actually, Upton is known around baseball for his consistency, at least for the kind of hitter he is.
i’m not sure his monthly splits from the last two seasons can back that argument up
You know you hit the nail on the head. (A) he is a overall #1 pick; (b) yes he is streaky but (c) Bank on 27 HR 100 RBI
His 100 rbi seasons to this point add up to 1. Due to the Tigers lack of a true leadoff hitter, he may well bat 2nd, behind Kinsler (who is not a leadoff hitter). I would say he is unlikely to get 100 this year (but it would be nice if he did).
He is 28 years old. They are basically paying for 2 years at $22 million and then he will go back into FA at 30. Once he opts out, and you can be certain he will, the Tigers get the best he has to offer and someone else can pay for his declining years after he turns 30. He has been one of the most consistent power hitters over the past 3 seasons and its pretty much a lock he will be for at least 2 more seasons.
Wow. I don’t know what else to say. This developed oh so quickly. Tigers have been more strongly linked to Cespedes, but were thought to be done! Mike Ilitch just refuses to lose and not pay. Not surprised to see something like this happen, though. It just happened so fast. Maybe Chi Sox reply by signing Cespedes? They may need to to keep up in this AL Central, especially with Detroit and KC continuing to spend big.
I don’t think it’s to far out thre to consider them the favourites of the central with him, Zimmerman and how they overhauled the pen. We all know winning the offseason doesn’t guarantee success though
The royals are still the favorite. Tigers aren’t too far behind. The way the royals play on paper stats don’t really matter.
Don’t forget the Twins and Indians. The Twins barely missed a Wild Card spot this year and are only gonna be getting better as the youth movement comes up.
Indians have no offense and will be without Brantley. Not a threat.
They’re not going to be “without Brantley”, he’s expected to miss the start of the season and that’s it.
Uh, the Twinkies? We’ll see, I guess.
the royals lost prospects to get the players like cueto and zobrist…i dont see how they are still the favorites over the tigers based on what they did in the offseason…the only reason why you say they are the favorites is cause they are defending champs
yep, Brandon Finnegan, Sean Manaea, John Lamb, Cody Reed, and that other pitcher sent to the A’s were really going to help the Royals in 2016, much less help their current team. You don’t have any idea what your talking about…. They are the favorites because unlike the Tigers they have been to back to back World Series unlike the Tigers who have always found a way to screw it up in the fall.
No because they’ve been to the World Series two years straight. They still have that bullpen. If you go position by position
1st-Tigers if and when Cabrera is healthy, although what Hosmer means to the royals it’s not so far a gap
2nd-obviously the Tigers
SS- it’s about a wash
LF- it’s about a wash. Gordon would probably post better hr Numbers in a different park just like Hosmer.
DH- Depends what VMart you get.
The Tigers made a move out of desperation. The royals have an identity. Your looking at this on paper as a fan. The Royals really only lost zobrist. Cueto was nothing like the royals though they would be getting. They still have prospects that can make a splash. Zimmer is right there, Starling will still intrigue a lot of team. A couple arms up at the top are probably intriguing to teams. At least enough for the 2 year window they have. They will probably be bear after that but royal fans aren’t going to complain.
It’s not even so much that it the way the royals play the game. As baseball guys it’s so much fun to watch. As a Dodgers fan, it exciting to see the game played right and built right. It’s not a collection of high payed guys that don’t really fit aka tigers and the Dodgers last year.
Teams spending big on Free agents rarely win the crown. See Dodgers and Angels. Yes Yankees 2009 and Boston spends heavily, but I would rather follow the path of the Giants Cardinals, and Royals. The Phillies did more before spending and mortgaging their future in 2011
Iggy is a markedly better SS
As of today in Las Vegas, the Royals, Indians and Tigers are all 25/1 to win World Series and 12/1 to win AL Pennant.
Will this Upton affect Verlander?
Why would it?
Verlanders married to Kate Upton
When did they get married?
i dont think they are married but they reported a few weeks ago about how much fun it would be in the clubhouse (miggy may joke about it, we all know how funny miggy is)
justin verlander + kate upton = justin upton…lol
thanks. now my coffee is dripping down my computer desk. that’s some good new math
Wow. I don’t know what else to say. This developed oh so quickly. Tigers have been more strongly linked to Cespedes, but were thought to be done! Mike Ilitch just refuses to lose and not pay. Not surprised to see something like this happen, though. It just happened so fast. Maybe Chi Sox reply by signing Cespedes? They may need to to keep up in this AL Central, especially with Detroit -and KC continuing to spend big. —
Oops no idea how this got reposted
Just Another Fan
Great fit. Detroit’s taking back the Central next year.
Not really actually. Makes the Tigers almost entirely right handed. But still, I thought Upton was one of the prizes of the off-season. Most people who ding him have never seen him play.
Better to be mostly RH than LH, but it doesn’t matter with that lineup, as they all hit RHP as well as LHP very well.
Disagree , the royals are still the favorite
RyÅn W Krol
No they’re not. They played insane defense and got away with an average rotation. PECOTA has good reason for projecting them so low. Tigers likely will take it back.
they put them in 4th place last year. and what did they do? they won the most games in the american league and won the world series. so the royals are still the team to beat over the tigers in the al central, the royals have something the tigers don’t , a lights out bullpen
Sox / Royals / Indians all have a chance of winning the division
The additions of Justin Wilson, Francisco Rodriguez, and Mark Lowe give the Tigers’ bullpen the potential to very, very good. Remember also that the Royals no longer have Greg Holland or Ryan Madson. The Royals bullpen beyond Wade Davis is shaky at best, especially when considering that after Davis the only ‘sure-thing’ is Herrera. And Herrera’s peripherals are worrisome going forward.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not sold on Mark Lowe, and the Tigers have a history of having former elite closers blow up in their faces, but the Tigers have a better bullpen right now.
I will take Davis and his 20 more home runs per year for less then 20 million more in total value.
The Tigers didn’t need a First Baseman, so this comparison is kinda pointless.
Chris Davis has been playing 1B, but he’s a capable OF and can even play 3B.
No one was going to sign him to play either. They are footnotes at the end of a sales pitch.
He also pitched in a game ,so is he a pitcher too?
Upton signed for two years at 22MM each, in all likelihood. Plus he’s younger than Davis and can play a position we need.
If Davis only hits .220 or lower how happy will you be?
Anyone who thought Cespedes isn’t going to get paid should realize their mistake.
i pegged Ceapedes for 4/84.
you’re right..I’m bumping it to 5/110.
Guaranteed at least 5 years and at least $100m
I got him at 5 /105 with a opt at 3 and mult op at 4 w buyout.
Still not enough to put them over the hump – it’s the Tiger way to underachieve – but you can’t blame them for trying!
Reasonable landing spot. Will be interested to hear about the terms.
125 million though over 6 years that’s a little much considering they could of got cespedes for that $. Note mentioning cespedes is better in every aspect of the game compared to upton the only thing good about upton is his age.
Steamer projects 2016 WAR of 3.0 in `144 games for Yoenis Ces;pedes and 2.9 in 137 games for Justin Upton.
We don’t know how much the Tigers would have needed to offer to land Cespedes.
And there’s also the fact that Cespedes won’t cost a draft pick while Upton did. Altho the Tigers only had to forfeit their third rounder to sign Upton so I don’t think this really bothered them all that much.
age is a factor in choosing upton over cespedes and even tho cespedes liked detroit, he was traded from them and may see that as a stopgape to return
i like cespedes cause he has a cannon of an arm but i think upton would be cheaper (If cespedes signs a similar length of a deal) and the age is on uptons side
I don’t think he sees that as a stopgap to return. He knows that the Tigers were selling at the deadline and as such had no reason to hang onto him. He knows that they didn’t trade him because of a personal issue or because they didn’t believe in his value. They probably even told him when they traded him that they were interested in signing him in the offseason.
Illitch went over and beyond what anyone was expecting. What a job by the tiger’s front office this year.
Kinsler, Cabrera, JD Martinez, Upton, V Martinez
That’s a crazy middle of the order. Pair that with two young players with upside in McCann and Castellanos, and a shortstop that can hit near .300 in Iglesias, and CF looks like the biggest hole. It’s not even much of a hole as both the CFs combined for a 93 OPS last season. This lineup could be potent. It all depends on pitching.
Thats an old/unexperienced/way overpaid middle of the lineup. I see injuries catching up to this team and that doesn’t even take into account paying Upton 20+ mil his age 33 and 34 seasons.
How is that middle of the order inexperienced?
I was gonna say “old”, actually, but to each his own.
He was commenting on each player individually. Presumably talking about JD Martinez being inexperienced.
There’s likely an opt out, but even if there isn’t, in today’s age of baseball contracts, a contract ending at a player’s age 34 season is very reasonable.
Old and inexperienced.
how is 25+ yrs of experience between miggy and vmart inexperienced check your sources pal
big money. Yawn.
Another RH bat. Yawn.
Opt out clause in the contract. Yawn.
For the price of a Top 15 prospect and some 19-year old arms, they could’ve had a guy like Khris Davis for $600k per year and a 2WAR season.
This is just dumb, big-bully, big-wallet, zero strategy roster building IMO.
unexperienced? This will be JD’s 3rd full season, Cabrera, Upton, Victor, and Kinsler are all big time vets. As to old… Victor yes, he’s concerning. But JD and Upton are 28, Kinsler is in great shape in his early 30’s and Miggy’s only 32 or so. They have another year or two before the old REALLY hurts them.
Old? Unexperienced? First off are you really throwing those two together? Secondly: Justin Upton – 28, JD Martinez – 28, Miguel Cabrera – 32. That is your 2-4 or 3-5. Who is old? Miggy is in his prime now.
They might as well just go ahead and sign Fowler for CF. They would only lose a 4th round pick. Besides,it would a miracle draft to get players the caliber of Zimmermann, Upton, and Fowler with the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th round picks. You might as well go for it now because Cabrera and Martinez aren’t getting any younger.
More likely Kinsler, Upton, Cabrera, Victor, JD… they’re not stacking 4 right-handers in a row and Kins/Upton have more value at the top of the order.
Nice signing for the tigers when they already had enough offense but the royals are still the team to beat , the Tigers still need to fix the bullpen
they did fix the bullpen,did you already forget about Justin Wilson,K rod and mark Lowe?
Not as good as the royals bullpen imo but they did upgrade . I still consider the royals the favorite in the central
I don’t know if he is worth a 6 year contract he is very streaky
What power hitter isn’t streaky (non-Mike Trout division)?
What are the Tigers doing? Why are they not rebuilding?
Getting two stud prospects like Norris and Fulmer help speed up rebuilds
Because Mr, Illitch wants to win and win now! We should all be appreciative to have an owner thats not afraid to go out and get the best talent available!
I would love for my Rockies to trade owners with the Tigers. He has no problem using money to improve the team rather than to line his own pockets. If you just want to make money, there are plenty of more lucrative businesses to get into besides sports.
You obviously don’t follow the Tigers and their front office(Mike Illitch) as they r in a win now mindset as they have too many good pieces to rebuild
They were never rebuilding to begin with. They had an amazing core, and they just supplemented it with some very nice pieces in Zimmerman and Upton
mainly because their owner is getting old and doesnt have time for a rebuild
because Mr.Ilitch is the owner,and he’s awesome and he wants to win,and why would you really want the TIGERS to rebuild,they retooled,go get em Tigers
tigers are in a win now mode based on illitch but in a few years (before uptons opt out) if the tigers are not in it, they have 2 players that can bring back alot of top prospects like price and cespedes did for us…so its a win win for us
I don’t think you try to rebuild when you have hitters the caliber of Detroit’s lol
Excited to see about this lineup and what they do this season but keep in mind upton strikes out ALOT and I’m afraid that there pitching is still weak on the back end.
Bullpen has been rebuilt. Hopefully it’s improved. Rotation looks solid with Verlander, Zimmermann, Sanchez, Pelfrey and Norris. Doesn’t look weak to me.
Well yeah bullpen can’t be any worst lol. But here’s the issues with the starters verlander lets hope he’s back to his old self as he looked like that at the ending of last year. Zimmerman nothing bad on him great signing. Sanchez from past experiences always hurt and last year even healthy was very rough giving up a lot of runs. Pelfrey is awful as he managed last year an average outing of 5.5 innings but maybe in this park he will be better. And Norris good but you don’t want to rush him but I feel this kid will be a very productive #2 pitcher in a year or 2.
My oh my:
However you mix or match the group, that is one hell of a starting 9 in the line-up. 6-7 legit threats to hit .280 or better, 5-6 guys who can hit around 20 or more HR’s, 2 solid speed guys, and for the most part also pretty solid defense everywhere you look…
That’s a great lineup, but their contention will rely heavily upon the development of Fullmer, Norris, and their pen if they are going to top the Royals….Unless they just plan on outscoring everyone lol
KC with superior defense and pen
I will still take the royals over the tigers for winning the central
So how many comments do you plan to reply to saying that you think they’re the favorites?
This guy does this on every thread.
It looks to me like a pretty dominant righty lineup. What happens when they face a dominant righthanded pitching staff?
yes!!!you gotta love Mr.i
$$$,avila’s done a great job in his first year as gm,Zimmermann,Upton,
J.Wilson,M.Lowe,K rod and maybin, look out royals we’re coming for ya!!!
What teams are left to offer Cespedes what he wants? The White Sox, maybe? I can’t see Philly or Atlanta paying out big during rebuild years. Is it actually possible he goes back to the Mets on a one or two year contract? If so, Sandy Alderson played this PERFECTLY.
White sox or Angels will give over 100 mil. Mets, Braves, Phillies are out of it unless a one year deal, but they won’t come to that. Houston could strike if the price is right, but like the Braves would need to move an OFer first
Angels may be Cespedes landing spot. The need an outfielder and the are in that win now mind set.
the angels make the most sense for cespedes
I predicted the Tigers would sign him on the Cespedes post. Pretty much this was an easy pick. With Umpton – Fowler and Cespedes left their was only a few teams that would work. Det – WS – Wash and Hust. The Mets wouldn’t work because one he was more than Ces and two if they didn’t want to go long term w him they wouldn’t w Upton simple. Wash full in the outfield n if plus w a draft pick they go after Ces first. WS couldn’t afford him plus long term deal n draft would knock them out. That made it easy. U could argue the lux tax but the owner didn’t care and has said that. Hust was the other pick. But w draft pick it was almost a give me he go to Det. St L was not in
Ces could go to a few teams. But NOT LA A forget it. They already said their not going over the lux tax many times. StL is out because they said 100 times their NoT spending big money and they have A better plan. N it is better.
The Mets n WS won’t go over 3 years this won’t get it done. To get him signed by either it take 5 at 105 w an opt at 3 or Mut opt at 4 or both. Maybe 6 with opt at 2 or 3 6/120. This gives them a chance to get out the contact in the 3 years or 2 years they want. If he accept a club option. Other than that he be an Astro.
Flowler best bet was to take that QO. The WS will problem end up signing him at 32 m for 2 years n is take that n run.
St L is not interested in either. Flower for good reasons. With all that happened this winter giving the cubs a draft pick wouldn’t go over well. The Cards will trade e Rockies for an out fielder. Which is smart. They have trade material mo draft pick they need a hitter n would get a great one in any if the rocks OF. The be done bank it.
Their are a few Dark Horses. Pitt has done nothing n just playing a WC game every year doesn’t cut it. Signing Ces at least would help them. They won’t win 98 games this year.
Miami poss their like a mid pack team. The Nash won’t have a fluke rotten season this year. The Mets lost 2 of their guys so it be tight. Adding Ces makes it tighter.
Their always the shock mystery team like Arz did with Grez. But doubtful.
But my pick is the Astros.
In what way does Houston need an OFer? They have Springer, Gomez and Rasmus with Marisnick and Preston Tucker as backups.
The Cubs didn’t need a second base either. The Rockies didn’t need a outfielder either. Sometimes you have to look outside the box. Your right they don’t but they will. Hust was a hot team last year, and really their about one or two players from winning the AL, maybe even a title. Astros my friend – Watch
I can see the Braves signing him to a 2- or 3-year deal and trading him for prospects at the deadline to a team making a playoff push.
Tigers got the best position player.
Both he and Zimmerman we perfect considering the type of players the Tigers were looking for. These two contracts could look beautiful by the time they are done
Dang good for Upton, wish ATL would have got him back is streaky but with all that lineup there going to be hitting some bombs in the motor city,
Wow, we will have to wait and see how this one turns out.
The opt-out clause is such a brilliant inclusion, because it gives the player an incentive to not suck for the life of his new contract once he finally starts making the big bucks. Hopefully J-Up won’t be the fraud his brother is.
Another reason I love the Braves rebuild. They had no chance whatsoever at signing either Upton or Heyeard for those prices. Yet they managed to get Fried, Peterson, Mallex, Swanson, Blair, Inciarte, and 1 year of Shelby Miller too.
Talk about having a smart GM.
Yea but the Braves had no problem paying a 1B that money.
Can’t pay all the players that money. If pick Freeman over everyone else too. Freeman has offense and defense. Both Heyward and Upton tend to be more streaky with the bat. Strike out a lot, and are less clutch than Freeman. The Braves paid the right star.
Freeman is Clutch? I must have missed all of those playoff games where he was “Clutch”
.832 – career
.661 – late and close
.785 – high leverage
That is the opposite of clutch.
Maybe you should read before posting. I never said freeman was clutch. I said the other two were less clutch than him. This goes beyond some stat you can pull up. It comes from watching the games, where something small that a player does (such as a sacrifice fly or making a productive out) does not affect the OPS.
Prob Tigers fans mad because you said Justin is a streaky hitter. He’ll have 20+ plus homers and 80-90 RBIs but he is not clutch! Too many times that guy struck out in big situations and not to mention how bad his D is. He’s a decent player, but I’d rather have Freeman any day of the week!
Being from Detroit, I’m confused. Why do you have to choose only one player to pay?
Well Detroit fans, you sure will love Justin Upton for about a month and a half out of the year.
Stupid post. Just look at his numbers b4 posting something silly like that. ALL players go through slumps
The past 3 years upton has had 2 months in each with sub 220 a and sub 700 ops.
As a braves fan, he streaky af
He’s so streaky and not clutch! your comment is dead on RD!
How does that compare to Chris Davis?
Guess we will just have to enjoy the other 5 months (I’m including October).
He’s right. I had Upton on my fantasy team the last two years. He gets in insane slumps and they last a long time. But when he’s on fire he’s on fire.
With this move my proprietary formula pegs Detroit at 84 wins. Once the injuries hit start subtracting Ws.
Speechless. Buy. Pizza. Now. Tigers fans!
Gotta give it to the Tigers owner who isn’t afraid to open the wallet. Royals are still better, but it will be close. Tigers are older, so they may blink first when the injuries happen.
At the start of the year, it will be interested to see which team is older. Last year, KC was the older team. Tigers played a lot of rookies in the pen.
What I take from this is that Cespedes isn’t getting the money he wants. He’s the last big outfielder on the market meaning that there are less suitors. At this point, noone is really desperate for an outfielder except for the Angels who probably won’t sign him because of the luxury tax thing. The White Sox are going to sign him because they are the last team that NEEDS him. Yea, the Astros, Mets, O’s and others would be better with him, but I doubt they overpay because they would still be fine without him. I think he takes a slight pillow contract of 4/$75m from the White Sox with an opt out after 2016. This is good for both parties because Cespedes gets about 18.75m this season and can opt out and find himself in a much shallower market. If the White Sox are good this season, they can extend him a QO and get a pick and if they aren’t, then they can trade him at the deadline which would get them prospects and would be good for Cespedes because he wouldn’t get a QO.
Also, I think Bryan Holaday is being DFA’d. He’ll certainly draw interest on waivers due to the fact that Wilin Rosario is now in Korea. His only competition on the market is Drew Butera who I speculate will be DFA’d by KC once the Kennedy deal is done, Either way, both guys seem to have good shots at landing back-up jobs,
No way in heck Cespedes doesn’t get a 9-figure deal! And I don’t think he’s interested in getting an opt out clause after one year. He is already coming off arguably the best year of his career. He would really have to step it up to get more next year, not to mention possibly being tied to draft pick compensation while he isn’t this year.
Your proposed offer from the Sox. 1 year for 18.75 is not going to happen. He would easily get a better one year deal with the Mets. If no one offers him a long term deal he will get a one year 22-25million deal and re-enter the free agent market next year. If I was the Mets I would offer him a one year $25 million deal or a 3 year $66 million. I’d have difficulty going to 4+ years. The Mets need him the most at this point.
If I’m Cespedes I refuse to sign with the Mets no matter what if they make that offer. He is the reason they made the it to the playoffs and, by extension, the World Series and they only offer him a one year deal? That’s insulting!
yes he played his role and excelled at it at that time but you are kind of hugely discrediting the mets pitching staff…
Since when did Rosario land in korea? Haven’t found or heard of anything of the sort
It was reported Sunday Night.
Well, this should certainly help solve their pitching problems…..
Guess I get to eat crow. Did not see this coming. I really thought they were done making moves, no matter how much I thought they needed a LF. Huge improvement in LF, hopefully for just two years (that would mean he played well). It makes for an expensive platoon in CF, or puts some OF back in play for trade. It will be interesting to see where Cespedes ends up now.
Opt out after two years may actually help the team. So will become two year contract for around 22 per year. Awesome.
Mr I, you the man
AA is helping us forget DD.
Great move by Detroit.
IF they can stay healthy, that line up is solid.
Wonder if Tigers made offers to Cespedes and Upton, and said first to say yes gets contract.
Someone wake up Kenny/Rick or jerry and tell them to make a move now before cespedes goes and lands somewhere else. He won’t cost us a draft pick and like Phillies2017 said and maybe use him to flip. Give him and opt-out too so he will want to perform and let’s wrap this off-season up.
Unless they are more comfortable with AVI then we all think and by his stats, know they should be or possibly see the trade route as a better option seeing we have pitching depth and maybe wait until the trade deadline to capitalize.
The White Sox don’t have the resources. Even if they were to move LaRoche they still wouldn’t have the $ for Cespedes. 26th in attendance last year and projected in the bottom 5 in attendance again, Austin Jackson is a more likely option or they may go into the season with Garcia and upgrade at the deadline if they are w/i a game or two of a wildcard.
With the offseason acquisitions of Justin Upton, Jordan Zimmermann, Mike Pelfrey, Mark Lowe, Francisco Rodriguez and Cameron Maybin, where does the Detroit payroll stand in relation to the luxury tax threshold?
And good reason Atlanta would not get him or Cespedes. Latter contract will be a horrible overpay I am sure.
Not surprised at all that Detroit chose Upton over Cespedes….they’ve been there done that….
I think this is a good deal for the Tigers, Upton plays at the very worst, average defense while hitting for power with a career .825 OPS. Also he is young, so Detroit likely gets none of the decline years.
Cespedes back to the Mets on a one year deal now?
I hope Upton does well in Detroit. I enjoyed watching him while he was a Brave. Ya, I know, he’s a streaky hitter but the end result of his production is great.
Love this deal for the Tigers. Gotta remember, he’s not going to be relied on as much in this lineup as prior teams. This is one of the few years Detroit can sign a top free agent without giving up a first round pick. Next year’s market is terrible in comparison. Why not get an impact bat now?
detroit had it in the bag this year. Twins just don’t have enough offense. And the Royals’ rotation is a joke even with Ian Kennedy (who is still garbage)
Royals rotation = Tigers. Tigers offense > Royals. Royals pen > Detroit. Royals Defense > Detroit. Tigers injuries > Royals.
Tigers still have a much better rotation than the Royals and it’s not even close. Verlander, Zimmerman, Sanchez, and Norris all are better pitchers than anyone in the Royals rotation. Maybe, if Ian Kennedy bounces back he can put up good numbers, but you have to give the Tigers the edge for the rotation. As for the bullpen and defense, yes KC has the best of both, but Tigers dramatically improved their bullpen so it’s not as far off as it was.
So the guy with 60 major league innings is better than anyone in the Royals rotation?
Too early to say, but its possible.
I’d be willing to bet he will be this year.
Nola Di Bari 67
Sox will NEVER pay out the years and the $$ Cespedes is seeking. They just don’t do that. If they end up with anyone, it would probably be Fowler, unless Colorado is willing to accept a Garcia and Eric Johnson for one of their lefty hitting outfielders.Sox won’t and shouldn’t give up Fullmer or Anderson and they have basically not much from there. I think they would prefer a lefty bat anyway.
That deep dish pepperoni that Little Caesars has is actually super tasty.
Would someone explain this pizza connection please.
The owner of the Tigers (and Detroit Red Wings) is the founder and owner of Little Caesars The Illich Empire is worth over $5 Billions
The Detroit Tigers are owned by Mike Illitch, who also owns Little Caesar’s pizza. The more money LC makes, the more money he has to blow on the Tigers!
They might as well sign cespy to a mammoth contract now and completely blow through the threshold and the division. They could get so many runs that the pitching wouldn’t matter lol. Illitch seems to be in spending mode
Cespedes to the mets maybe then? Everyone is saying maybe the cards or Angels, and Balt, but I don’t see him getting his own 6 year deal, which to me keeps the mets chances still alive.
Would be nice to see the Angels sign him
This is a fanatic deal for Detroit, and thank God we have an owner like Mr. Illitch! Not only is Upton only 28, but in Atlanta and San Diego he has NEVER batted in between people like Cabrera or Martinez. He will be seeing more FB’s than he ever has before, and get ready for a Monster season! This 2-3-4-5-6 is gonna be SICK! Kinsler, Cabrera, JD, Upton, Vmart!?!? D.A.M.N!
Anyone talking about how “Streaky” Upton is, keep this in mind. He has always had to be the guy in the order who carried that particular order. Not so in Detroit. He will be 1 cog in the offensive machine, and will see more pitches in the strikezone than he has ever dreamed of before! He will absolutely LOVE hitting between Cabrera and JD (or whichever stud bats around him). Sick stat year coming!
I could be wrong, but I see the order going like this:
Vmart returning fully to form could mess up that lineup. Good problem to have!
Most reports in the Freep are speculating on him batting 2nd or 6th. I like the two hole for him because, other than last year, he tends to be above a .350 OBA, and he has some speed. I also like the idea of him getting fastballs in front of Miggy. The Tigers and Ausmus do not buy into the “best hitter” batting 2nd. They like Miggy third. I would also not give him more AB’s than JD Martinez, who has been the better hitter. Victor will probably bat 5th to break up the righties.
???? The tigers lineup is potent but in no way did justin have to carry a lineup with freeman, an almost nl batting title Chris Johnson, Evan Gattis, and heyward… Trust me that guy is streaky!!! MVP one month strike out king the next.
Not one of those guys is as good as Victor Martinez, has EVER had a season as good as JD Martinez’s last year, or can be mentioned in the same sentence as Miguel Cabrera, whose worst year would be their career year. Upton’s NEVER been in a lineup even close to this good.
In what way did I compare the braves players to detroits??????? I said justin did not have to carry the team!! And I’d beg to differ on freeman and V! You fans are delusional to think this guy is the greatest player ever!
Justin was on a team that had more power than al teams! So the line up was feared!!!! He in now way carried the team! If anyone ever carried the braves it was and is Freddie Freeman!
You can have your 168 strike out!ill take freeman! And freeman is just as good of an offensive player just not has much power as jd….
Good for you guys but for an average player with some power and bad d… Nice opt out! Can’t hit lefties either.. Just tired of seein guys like him bc he has some power sign big.. Dumb.
Just amazed at how much he got when the market seemed to be dwindling.
I know there were other suitors but wow.
The Tigers are essentially what you would get if you let the fans run a team. Sign all the expensive free agents until you have no farm system and your entire team is overpaid and over 30.
Tigers aren’t going to sniff the playoffs next year. Sure, they have some good hitters in Upton, Cabrera, JD Martinez, Victor Martinez, and Kinsler. But they also have a thin rotation without an ace – sorry, Verlander and Zimmerman don’t qualify – with questionable options at the back end (Pelfrey?!?!). The bullpen is still awful. The defense is horrendous. And don’t forget that they have major holes at 3B, C, and CF.
It’s essentially a stars and scrubs roster. Best case scenario is probably a wild card birth.
Does that work? Rambling until you believe the nonsense you’re unloading.
I guess you’ve never visited any fan site message boards /community forums, huh?
I love fans that post on these when they are jealous that THEIR owners don’t spend like Mr. I! We will see! You must be a Marlins fan, or any other club who has an owner who pockets their profit instead of put it back into the team. Haters gonna hate
Bullpen is far from bad the guys on mlb network say tigers have a good pen, they got better with Justin Wilson, K-rod, Mark Lowe and with Alex Wilson who was really good last year also Hardy. Defense tigers had less errors than royals by two, fielding .986 tigers .985 royals. Tigers ranked 7 in fielding and royals 10 we have two good platoon guys in cf and catcher James McCann did not make any errors.
It’s clear you’ve never watched a tigers game recently in the past 4 years. If you had, maybe you’d know that the Tigers have 7 (including gose and maybin) of their 9/10 every day starters are under 30. They also only have 3 players left from their 2011 team (miggy, jv, and vmart). How about you stop rehashing bogus storylines about the Tigers being the Phillies? It’s just such a lazy storyline.
Yep, Ilitch does it again. He really wants that title before he croaks. After all, he can’t take his money with him.
I love Ilitch , he wants to win like the fans, even though I’m not a Tigers fan.
they need more bullpen help, badly. either that or call fulmer up after super 2 cutoff and put him in the pen.
Last years top 3 relievers, Soria, Al-Al, and Kroll are gone (Nathan, too). They have been replaced with K-rod, Lowe and Justin Wilson. Hardy and A. Wilson did fine in middle relief last year. That gives them 5 competent relievers going in, which is more than they had last year. All they need is two more, one being the long man (probably Shawn Greene). Won’t say great, but much improved.
Also he’s not going to Bault they were after Davis the whole time played bluff card n out heat on SB N Davis. That’s why they went public about interest in Ces. Notice next day Davis signed. Lol. Well done. But there not dumping n e more cash so sorry no Balt. Astros. Bank it.
Upton is a good player who can do a number of things. Anyone care to offer which of Upton or Davis will add more value to their teams?
Davis is more important to Baltimore beyond a doubt. Detroit already had a very solid offense in a light hitting division. Detroit would have competed without Upton Baltimore would have been absolutely hopeless without Davis . I’m a Jays if that it matters….
Nobody’s conjecture on this matters one iota, as Mike Ilitch is almost on his death bed and wants a friggin Ring, period. Therefore he will spend as much of he and his wife’s net worth of 2.7 billion on whatever he so desires and as a Detroit sports fan and Michigan taxpayer, (extorted peasant), I am all for it, since he gets many of my tax dollars for his stadiums, etc. . . He purchased himself 4 Stanley Cups and those were some of the best days of being a Detroit sports fan ever! He can spend every cent of his fortune as far as I am concerned and it doesn’t have to make one bit of sense baseball, sports or other-wise. . . Go TIGERS!
THIS is so real.
It looks like right now factoring in benefits and incentives plus the rest of a teams 40 man roster at least 4 teams will exceed MLB Luxury Tax Threshold in 2016: Dodgers, Yankees, Red Sox and the Tigers. There is a possibility of the Angels IF they sign Cespedes.
This is in effect a 2 year deal with an insurance policy for Upton. It should probably be messaged that way.
The Tigers get 2 under 30 years out of Upton while he is motived for a new contract at age 30. Stated that way, it is a HUGE win for the Tigers.
My Probabilistic Risk Assessment? 68% chance he opts out according to my math.
I think your 68% is low end. My guess is he will opt out even if he has “average for him” years to get a 6 year deal at 30. Tigers also get a draft pick for a QO.
they just overpaid for upton. The guy is the streakiest hitter. He will carry a team for a month, and then do nothing for the next two. Good luck tigers.
If he carries the Tigers for a month/year, they win the division and he is worth every penny.
They already have Miggy and VMART and JD AND Kinsler to carry them in the other months.
But do they have the pitching?
Ok Mr. Illitch… I see you… I’ll go get myself a Little Caesar’s lunch combo today to help out.
Any team would love to have a player like Upton. Credit to the Tigers owner who is willing to shell out that kind of money every year to bring in top talent. Its just a shame that it never leads to a World Series Trophy. Yes you have to have great talent to win it all, but in my opinion team chemistry is right there as well. And that is what makes this KC team so good!!! Go Royals!!!
Its luck. Royals had a lifetime of luck in two wildcard games. Tigers have the luck of Torii missing that Grand Slam in Fenway by 3 inches…. costing them their best chance of winning it all with their “super team” and the luck of Miggy being injured at the wrong time.
Chemistry = Luck and health.
The Royals were not a were not a wild card team last year. If I remember right they had the best record in the A.L.
Correction. 2 Elimination games: As in 2014 and Astros in 2015. Same point though.
Don’t forget to mention you need utter miracles like the royals
Great player, but he’s way overrated. OBP fell the last couple of years… let’s see if he can get that back up.
For me, injuries would be the only reason for the Tigers to not win it all this year. A few of the vets know their time is now or never, and for now they have a potent roster top to bottom. Come trade deadline, they have attractive pieces to dangle to fill gaps where needed-IF they’re even in the race, of course-we shall see, how the players have prepared, who’s ready to grind, there’s really no excuse now. Players need to play, and results should follow.
What “attractive pieces” can they dangle if they are in the race? Everything is pretty much on the major league roster, except for Fulmer. Highly doubt they would trade him since they have little else coming up the pipe.
Lots of nuggets of information that Steve Adams may be interested in…
Including how Ilitch first mentioned going after an OFer during the Tigers Christmas Party.
The tigers outfield is gonna be crazy this year can’t wait to see my boys out there on opening day good luck!