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Chris Davis contract and consequence


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#21 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 25 June 2018 - 09:25 AM

Weird-0, don't disagree however I also didn't think 5 years ago that the O's would get their team payroll up to $160M.



#22 DJ MC

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Posted 25 June 2018 - 09:48 AM

The Orioles' history, basically since Belle, has been to spend on "our guys". They have been willing to give extensions to players that are, if not outright homegrown, then at least are already in the organization and who have established themselves in some way. So they gave Roberts a large extension, they gave Mora a (for his age) large extension, they gave Markakis a large extension, they gave Jones a large extension, they gave O'Day a (for a non-closer) large extension, and they gave Davis a large extension (with a couple of those not technically extensions, as the players were already out of contract).

 

There are some notable exceptions to this. Tejada is the biggest one. Jimenez and Cobb are as well. But for the most part, the top of the organization has been willing to spend in this specific circumstance.

 

So that's where the belief comes from that freeing up the Davis money shouldn't be the top priority right now. The Orioles this offseason are probably not going to take that money and go sign, say, Dallas Keuchal and Garrett Richards. In two or three years, that might be a different story, depending on who is in charge at any level of the organization, but that's something you worry about then.


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#23 dude

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Posted 25 June 2018 - 08:24 PM

Jones, Manny, Britton, O'Day are gone after this season. Schoop has one more year. There are loads of differences in the roster heading to 2019 than then. Now that doesn't mean management will do things any differently but the situations are way different.

 

The only thing that makes any difference is exactly the same.

 

Right now, with the 2019 contracts (ODay, Trumbo) still in place, the Orioles are under 100M with a full roster for next year.

 

They have 40+M to spend on whatever they want to spend it on with Davis still sucking down his 17M.



#24 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 26 June 2018 - 04:14 PM

Ok I would rather have $57M to spend with no Davis that $40M to spend with Davis.



#25 Nigel Tufnel

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Posted 26 June 2018 - 04:37 PM

Ok I would rather have $57M to spend with no Davis that $40M to spend with Davis.

 

That's not the choice, though.  It's $57M with no Davis vs. $40M with Davis and prospects.



#26 dude

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Posted 26 June 2018 - 06:40 PM

Ok I would rather have $57M to spend with no Davis that $40M to spend with Davis.

 

I get that at this point it's just about holding on to be contrary, but it's just silly.

 

If the Orioles were up against some macro spending cap and operated more like 'regular' teams (like the Indians or DBacks are or the Dodgers are short term), then there certainly merit for considering the opportunity cost of prospects versus spending flexibility....but that's not where they are and it's not how they operate.

 

If it's how you want to operate because you want to turn that space into 2 elite pitchers, great, but that has nothing to do with how the Orioles will operate.

 

There are no teams eating 68-92M in terms of value for Machado.  It's inconsistent with how the market operates and beyond that, there's not even an argument being made for what team that could potentially be.  You aren't saving 17M per year, you might save 20-25M total (ie, you'd still be dumping most of the money into Davis to try with someone else).



#27 Guest_pitbull_*

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Posted 02 July 2018 - 03:44 PM

Just think...if intelligence & common sense prevailed.. and Baltimore instead invested the money in Cruz & Markakis.



#28 DJ MC

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Posted 02 July 2018 - 03:49 PM

Just think...if intelligence & common sense prevailed.. and Baltimore instead invested the money in Cruz & Markakis.

 

...we would have been happy as one of them bucked the trend of late-30s decline that 99.9% of players follow, and unhappy as the other DID follow that tread for the past three years?


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#29 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 02 July 2018 - 03:59 PM

Just think...if intelligence & common sense prevailed.. and Baltimore instead invested the money in Cruz & Markakis.


Had no problem with the O's not signing Cruz.  Know some did.  (Mike Randall here was one.) He definitely has exceeded my expectations.

He turned 38 yesterday.

 

4 years after his time here; and his OPS by year has been .935, .915, .924, and .917.

 

Cruz's 2014 OPS was .858, which was his highest since 2010.

2011: .821
2012: .779
2013: .833

 

There was definitely no reason imo after '14, to expect that he'd post better numbers in '15-'18, than he did at any point from '11-'14.



#30 Guest_pitbull_*

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Posted 02 July 2018 - 04:07 PM

this is Pedro's quote from the other thread in response to "why do you want to move the contract" For whatever reason, the full quote formatting didn't copy.

For any of these discussions I think it's important to still be the Orioles. I don't really share what I'd do, I share what I think I could get away with (in terms of opportunity) if I was making the calls under the Orioles structure. They have sets of rules they use and have used for a long time. Some may argue that's not fact, but if we were in court, every piece of evidence would suggest it's enough to be correct.

We've also seem the Orioles spend something north of 150M on payroll. That's more than many people thought they'd commit, but it does fall into the structure I'd suggest the Orioles follow. That is: player contracts are viewed at an individual level, not a collective level. If the Orioles meet their perceived value (whatever internal assessment they use) then you keep signing guys.

That brings you to limit. There is certainly (likely) some aggregate limit to what the Orioles are willing to do. We saw them dump CompBal picks to shed minor money.
-----------

My response to Pedro's question is you aren't even close to the area where the 17M per year makes any difference in what you can do.

Davis' contract doesn't prevent you from adding any player that meets your individual cost assessment and you aren't anywhere near a ceiling that would prevent you from investing resources in any other part of the organization, including player payroll.

Even if the Orioles 'poured' money into staff and scouting and development and IFA and hit their 15% add in the Rule 4, it's still no-where near what they're capable of spending.

Losing Davis' contract with Machado or any other combination of players doesn't create any opportunity you don't already have.
You don't need to shed his contract to do anything else. There's plenty of room.


Good seeing you again, old friend.

Davis has clearly lost his ability to play professional baseball (in fact, he would probably ride the pine in my softball beer league) but you completely nailed everything else regarding the financial planning.

#31 weird-O

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Posted 03 July 2018 - 07:28 AM

Just think...if intelligence & common sense prevailed.. and Baltimore instead invested the money in Cruz & Markakis.

Allow me to add a couple examples of how that common sense would have the O's in a better position today.

 

1) The O's wouldn't be looking at 4 more seasons at $24M in paychecks for a player who already established that his production was wildly uneven. Instead, they would be looking at an older Cruz and Markakis leaving after this season, unless all parties agreed that another extension fit their wants/needs.

2) Cruz and Markakis were both clubhouse leaders. Cruz in the big brother, outgoing, supportive, talkative way, especially with regard to Manny and Schoop. And then there's Markakis, who does it in the quiet, lead by example manner. 

3) Cruz is a proven post season contributor. Davis is a post season black hole. And since making the post season is the goal, why choose the pony that's going to pull up lame once you get there?     


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#32 Mike B

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Posted 03 July 2018 - 08:51 AM

I think the Cruz, Markakis and Davis situations are connected but not in the way some think.

 

I think Davis got the money, in part because Nick, Nelson and others left.  The Orioles were getting killed locally and nationally, for letting good players walk.  Add that noise to the fact, that Chris had 2 of the best power years the franchise has seen and the fact that, he was probably one of Peter's favorites and Chris got paid.

 

It has turned out to be a huge mistake, but while many did not like the deal at the time, I doubt whether anyone could see, this magnitude of decline.


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#33 DJ MC

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Posted 03 July 2018 - 09:34 AM

Allow me to add a couple examples of how that common sense would have the O's in a better position today.

 

1) The O's wouldn't be looking at 4 more seasons at $24M in paychecks for a player who already established that his production was wildly uneven. Instead, they would be looking at an older Cruz and Markakis leaving after this season, unless all parties agreed that another extension fit their wants/needs.

2) Cruz and Markakis were both clubhouse leaders. Cruz in the big brother, outgoing, supportive, talkative way, especially with regard to Manny and Schoop. And then there's Markakis, who does it in the quiet, lead by example manner. 

3) Cruz is a proven post season contributor. Davis is a post season black hole. And since making the post season is the goal, why choose the pony that's going to pull up lame once you get there?     

 

The only year in the past three where it really might have mattered was in 2015, when the difference between what Cruz and Markakis did versus what the Orioles' outfielders would likely have pushed them into the wild card. In 2016, dropping Davis' 3+ wins for Trumbo at first likely doesn't make up enough value to push the Orioles over Boston, so the only difference would have been hosting the wild card game; who knows what happens there, but it isn't exactly a huge change (unless it causes Showalter to use Britton properly...). In 2017, the Orioles were 10 games out of the wild card, so going up to, like, six games out is meaningless. And this year, being in the range of 30-53 instead of 24-59 just puts us nine games out of fourth place in the division instead of fifteen out.

 

So there is one year where there would have been a difference, one year where there MAY have been some difference, and two years where nothing would have changed. The only real change right now is that we would have $25ish-million in deals coming to an end as opposed to paying $23 million for several more seasons, but with the path the team is on right now that in itself is likely to be essentially meaningless.

 

So, yeah, I would make that trade for the extra postseason appearance; not a single one of us wouldn't. It's just that looking with such hindsight as the team should have known that Cruz would buck aging patterns and Markakis would have a surge four years down the line isn't a reasonable argument.


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#34 weird-O

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Posted 03 July 2018 - 10:41 AM

The only year in the past three where it really might have mattered was in 2015, when the difference between what Cruz and Markakis did versus what the Orioles' outfielders would likely have pushed them into the wild card. In 2016, dropping Davis' 3+ wins for Trumbo at first likely doesn't make up enough value to push the Orioles over Boston, so the only difference would have been hosting the wild card game; who knows what happens there, but it isn't exactly a huge change (unless it causes Showalter to use Britton properly...). In 2017, the Orioles were 10 games out of the wild card, so going up to, like, six games out is meaningless. And this year, being in the range of 30-53 instead of 24-59 just puts us nine games out of fourth place in the division instead of fifteen out.

 

So there is one year where there would have been a difference, one year where there MAY have been some difference, and two years where nothing would have changed. The only real change right now is that we would have $25ish-million in deals coming to an end as opposed to paying $23 million for several more seasons, but with the path the team is on right now that in itself is likely to be essentially meaningless.

 

So, yeah, I would make that trade for the extra postseason appearance; not a single one of us wouldn't. It's just that looking with such hindsight as the team should have known that Cruz would buck aging patterns and Markakis would have a surge four years down the line isn't a reasonable argument.

Just to clarify, because I didn't specifically say it, my reasoning then, as it is now, is based on reasonable, continued production, in line with their 2014 seasons. I agree that it would have been a stretch to think they could have done what they've done since leaving. It's a well thought out and detailed post. But it only accounts for what has happened. If Davis walks, they're a very different team. And no one can confidently say how things may have changed. And this is with the understanding that Davis's $24M/yr wouldn't have been spent elsewhere. Of the things that you can account for in that alternate reality, is the difference in the defense. Cruz, AJ and Nick are better than Mancini, AJ and Trumbo. Trumbo becomes the DH, if he's retained at all, and Mancini moves to 1B. Now the pitching is improved, because defense always improves pitching. This reasonably allows for more innings eaten by the starters, which strengthens the BP.  


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#35 DJ MC

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Posted 03 July 2018 - 11:36 AM

Just to clarify, because I didn't specifically say it, my reasoning then, as it is now, is based on reasonable, continued production, in line with their 2014 seasons. I agree that it would have been a stretch to think they could have done what they've done since leaving. It's a well thought out and detailed post. But it only accounts for what has happened. If Davis walks, they're a very different team. And no one can confidently say how things may have changed. And this is with the understanding that Davis's $24M/yr wouldn't have been spent elsewhere. Of the things that you can account for in that alternate reality, is the difference in the defense. Cruz, AJ and Nick are better than Mancini, AJ and Trumbo. Trumbo becomes the DH, if he's retained at all, and Mancini moves to 1B. Now the pitching is improved, because defense always improves pitching. This reasonably allows for more innings eaten by the starters, which strengthens the BP.  

 

Well, the $24 million would have been spent elsewhere, because Cruz and Markakis have made $25 million a year combined over the past four.

 

The defense may be improved, but Cruz' defense was average-to-below-average even before he came to Baltimore, and he has DHed about 75% of his time with the Mariners. So you are still talking about Trumbo in the field for at least one year, and then Mancini at first. So you still have an outfield hole you are either filling with a declining Cruz, Trumbo/Mancini, or someone else who is probably on par with what the Orioles already have been running out there. So it is really just Markakis helping there--which would be a big help, for sure, but it seems unlikely to be so big as to cause the kind of impact you are suggesting.


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#36 weird-O

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Posted 03 July 2018 - 12:18 PM

Well, the $24 million would have been spent elsewhere, because Cruz and Markakis have made $25 million a year combined over the past four.

 

The defense may be improved, but Cruz' defense was average-to-below-average even before he came to Baltimore, and he has DHed about 75% of his time with the Mariners. So you are still talking about Trumbo in the field for at least one year, and then Mancini at first. So you still have an outfield hole you are either filling with a declining Cruz, Trumbo/Mancini, or someone else who is probably on par with what the Orioles already have been running out there. So it is really just Markakis helping there--which would be a big help, for sure, but it seems unlikely to be so big as to cause the kind of impact you are suggesting.

The money spent on retaining Cruz and Markakis, isn't the same money that was spent on Davis. And even if you prefer to view it as such, I'd rather have the production of Cruz and Markakis over the production of Davis. And I'm speaking about the production we expected to get from those 3 players after the 2014 season. Two impact bats is better than one, because Davis can only hit once every trip through the line up. My position is that I would have rather had the O's keep Cruz and Nick, than let them walk, and dedicate $24M to Davis. If you disagree, great. But I still hold my same opinion.


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#37 DJ MC

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Posted 03 July 2018 - 01:14 PM

The money spent on retaining Cruz and Markakis, isn't the same money that was spent on Davis.

Says who?

 

And even if you prefer to view it as such, I'd rather have the production of Cruz and Markakis over the production of Davis.

Who is arguing otherwise?

 

And I'm speaking about the production we expected to get from those 3 players after the 2014 season. Two impact bats is better than one, because Davis can only hit once every trip through the line up. My position is that I would have rather had the O's keep Cruz and Nick, than let them walk, and dedicate $24M to Davis. If you disagree, great. But I still hold my same opinion.

 

Again, 1) Markakis hasn't been an impact bat for the past three years, and 2) the question isn't rather you want this now, but whether you wanted it in December of 2014. If you were told then that you could have a player going into his age-34 season with an OPS+ in his five years before coming to Baltimore of 119, and one who was turning 31 coming off a 104 OPS+ season, both with already declining defensive skills, and would have to give up after the coming season any hope to resign a 28-year-old who had a bad season but was a year removed from 53 homers and a third-place MVP finish, would you have felt that it was the best move for the organization?


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#38 weird-O

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Posted 03 July 2018 - 01:51 PM

Says who?

 

Who is arguing otherwise?

 

 

Again, 1) Markakis hasn't been an impact bat for the past three years, and 2) the question isn't rather you want this now, but whether you wanted it in December of 2014. If you were told then that you could have a player going into his age-34 season with an OPS+ in his five years before coming to Baltimore of 119, and one who was turning 31 coming off a 104 OPS+ season, both with already declining defensive skills, and would have to give up after the coming season any hope to resign a 28-year-old who had a bad season but was a year removed from 53 homers and a third-place MVP finish, would you have felt that it was the best move for the organization?

"Says who?" - Fair question, Peter Angelos said so. Multiple writers have shared that, most recently, Roch talked about it on the Fan. The money allocated to Chris Davis was to be spent only on Chris Davis.  

 

"Who is arguing otherwise?" - Given our back and forth, you're leaving me with the impression that you're happier with the decision to let them walk, and then eventually extending Davis. That doesn't mean you're happy with the way those decision have worked out. And it doesn't mean that's how you feel. But it is the impression I'm getting from you. I apologize if I'm misreading you. 

 

Unfortunately, the Sunspot board is no longer accessible. I wish it was, so that I could show links to comments I made when Cruz and Nick departed, and comments I made when the Davis extension was finalized. In those posts, you would have seen that I thought it was a bad idea to let those two go. How I view that, in relationship to extending Davis, is moot at this point. Since it's seems to be universally understood that retaining Davis was ownership's decision and primary objective. As a stand alone contract, I didn't want the O's to bring back Davis. I thought it was an enormous overpay. But more importantly, Davis is too inconsistent of a hitter. He can carry a team for two weeks. But he's also going to totally disappear for the next 4 or more weeks. At the time I made the comment that his peaks and valleys are tolerable at $10M or so a year. But they will become magnified and frustrating at a $20M+ salary (he hadn't signed yet, so we didn't know how much above $20M he would be getting). 

With all that said, I can say with confidence, devoid of all hindsight, that I wish they had kept Nick and Cruz, and that I didn't want Davis to stay in Baltimore, if it required paying the asking price Boras was floating around that winter (AKA: the money he got)   


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#39 BSLSteveBirrer

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Posted 03 July 2018 - 02:01 PM

In general I think a lot of us on here had the following position.

 

1. Markakis was a toss up. Some concern over the neck issue for sure.

2. Cruz - I think most wanted him to be resigned.

3. Davis - Most were fine bringing him back. Almost nobody thought the contract was smart.

 

Not hindsight, that's my best recollection.



#40 DJ MC

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Posted 03 July 2018 - 02:19 PM

"Says who?" - Fair question, Peter Angelos said so. Multiple writers have shared that, most recently, Roch talked about it on the Fan. The money allocated to Chris Davis was to be spent only on Chris Davis.

 

Did they say this when he was signed, or a year earlier when Cruz and Markakis were in free agency? That's the issue we're debating: not whether the money paid to Davis was only for him in 2015, but whether resigning Cruz and Markakis for a similar amount in 2014 would have prevented them from resigning Davis later. If you are saying that the Orioles would have signed Davis to that same contract anyway, that's fine, but then you're really arguing two separate points ("The Orioles shouldn't have signed Davis"; "The Orioles should have resigned Cruz and Markakis") instead of the one combined point you've been seeming to push ("The Orioles resigned Davis instead of Cruz+Markakis, and that was a bad decision").

 

I think that, at the time, resigning Cruz would have been a bad gamble, and one which turned out poorly--we aren't the first people to give up pumping cash into a slot machine right before it pays out. I would have been fine with resigning Markakis, but I think the decision to let him walk was reasonable given the past three seasons. I thought that the Davis deal was one the team would regret, like many, but I also am pretty sure I know what the fanbase reaction would have been had they not resigned him (whether or not you or I or anyone else as individuals would have been OK), and I definitely felt it would be more of a year-to-year consistency problem with a tail-off at the end as opposed to stalling into a nose dive right through rock bottom. But I don't think the two free-agency periods have much in common, other than the Orioles having money in 2015 that they wouldn't have had otherwise. And I don't think that letting Cruz and Markakis walk was anything more than good process coming up with a bad result.


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