Breaking News Megathread: Seager to Texas, Stallings to Miami + Scherzer and Ray!
It was rumored late yesterday evening and has now come to fruition. The Mets signed RHP Max Scherzer on a 3/$130M contract. The Mariners got Robbie Ray at 5/$115M. The starting pitching market is absolutely insane right now.
But, Corey Seager just signed with the Texas Rangers for 10/$325M. Holy cow.
And Jacob Stallings (C, Pittsburgh) was just traded to the Marlins.
Tweets, Details, and Thoughts inside:
Max Scherzer and the Mets are finalizing $130M, 3-year deal. Minor details to go only. — Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) November 29, 2021
Source: 3 years, $130 mil, opt out after two years. — Andy Martino (@martinonyc) November 29, 2021
Assuming Scherzer's deal is three equal payments ($43 million a year), he will make $58 million a year in 2022, 2023 and 2024. That's because the Nationals owe him $15 million a year for his 2015-2017 seasons. — Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) November 29, 2021
If Max Scherzer’s deal gets done as the Mets expect, the average annual value will be somewhere in the range of $43 million a year — a staggering jump of nearly 20% from the current record AAV of $36 million held by Gerrit Cole. It is a huge number, especially for a 37-year-old. — Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) November 29, 2021
Source: The Mariners are closing in on a deal with Robbie Ray. — Michael Mayer (@mikemayer22) November 29, 2021
Reigning AL Cy Young winner Robbie Ray and the Seattle Mariners are finalizing a five-year, $115 million contract with an opt-out after the third season, sources familiar with the deal tell ESPN. — Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) November 29, 2021
Ray gets a full no-trade in 1st 2 years of contract with #Mariners and can opt out after the third year. He has an assignment bonus after 2 years if he is traded. — Joel Sherman (@Joelsherman1) November 29, 2021
BREAKING: Star shortstop Corey Seager and the Texas Rangers are in agreement on a 10-year, $325 million deal, sources familiar with the situation tell ESPN. — Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) November 29, 2021
Corey Seager gets $5M signing bonus on $325M deal, limited no trade. No opt out. #rangers — Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) November 29, 2021
Marlins get catcher Jacob Stallings for pitcher Zach Thompson and prospects — Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) November 29, 2021
Pirates get in addition to Zach Thompson pitching prospects Kyle Nicolas and Connor Scott for Stallings — Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) November 29, 2021
On Max Scherzer/Steve Cohen/The Mets:
Well, Steve Cohen is officially going for it. And good for him. Steve Cohen is good for baseball. He’s not going to with over the love of other owners in the league, but honestly what owner should care about stuff like that? The goal after owning an MLB franchise should not be to find some other billionaire buddies to hang around with. The goal should be to win. Steve Cohen bought the Mets so that he could have fun running a team he rooted for as a young kid growing up. Now, it’s his time to put the pedal to the medal and try to create a Mets team that wins a World Series. That’s good for Steve, good for the Mets, and good for baseball.
For Scherzer, well, he’s now the highest annually paid player in the MLB, far surpassing both Mike Trout and Gerrit Cole who are making $36M AAV. Scherzer broke into the $40M range at $43.4M. Wow. (Add in another $15M each of these next three years also coming from the Washington Nationals due to contract deferrals and wow, Scherzer is going to be making $58M+. Good for him.)
For the Yankees, this should be a warning and a worrying sign. The “little brothers” across the RFK Bridge and the Grand Central Parkway are going for it. The “little brothers” are piecing together a formidable team that has multiple high-end pitching pieces and a very balanced line-up. Yankees fans are historically fair-weather fans. The Yankees will lose interest- and thus money- if they do not control New York City.
On Robbie Ray:
Well, I saw that earlier today Jeff Passan said on MLB Network something along the lines of, “The Big Budget teams (NYY, LAD, BOS) have been caught napping by the smaller budget teams (TEX, SEA, etc.) as players are looking to finalize deals before the CBA expires and not get forced into worse deals (if the MLBPA botches their CBA again) after the looming lockout.” And if that isn’t the truth.
Robbie Ray could very well be the next Patrick Corbin: a pitcher with a huge year right before free agency who gets a solid payday. Robbie Ray may also have just turned a corner. MLBTR predicted that he would be given a 5/$130M contract. The Seattle Mariners are now getting him on a 5/$115M ($23M AAV) contract.
Would I have done that if I was the Yankees? Well, it’s hard to say. However, look at what the going rate has been this year: Verlander (2/$50), Syndergaard (1/$20.5M), Scherzer (see above, but !!), and now Robbie Ray. He’s not making a crazy amount relative to his peers who are coming off of serious injuries. Yes, it’s a multi-year deal, but wow. Seattle paid a good price.
In other news, I’m super pumped about Jose Peraza though! The Yankees are making moves! (If you can’t tell, I’m being sarcastic.)
On Corey Seager:
Well, after rumors that it may happen, it’s finally here. The Texas Rangers have signed Corey Seager to a 10/$325M deal. The Yankees (and Dodgers) were beat. Yes, Carlos Correa (please, please, please no) and Trevor Story are still available. But, to have the Yankees. The YANKEES. Gosh darn it, they’re supposed to be THE PHYSICAL EMOBODIMENT OF THE DEATH STAR (as says the GM on a team that has made one move, on a minor league deal for a proven meh).
I will hold that if Cashman gets Story and Olson/Freeman than I’m overreacting. Reports that the Yankees were out on Seager have been prominent. (And hey, maybe the Rangers’ll trade this shortstop to the Yankees too!) However, as a fan, the Yankees getting passed by all of these free agents so far is not a good look. I understand that Cashman & Co. like to work in secrecy, they like to have the deal come out with very little fanfare leading up to it, and when a true deal gets done, well, yeah, that’s a special and fun feeling. I’m not having fun right now.
Texas has gone all out. They sense that their division is winnable and they’ve put a ton of money into trying to win it now. Credit to them. Seager will be a great player and the tandem of Seager-Semien up the middle will be formidable in the MLB for the next few years to come. Wow. Congrats to the Rangers.
On Jacob Stallings:
Welcome to Ethan’s ECONOMICS 101 lecture. Today we’re going to talk about monopolies. Now, I am a very very big fan of the board game Monopoly. (Some would even say that I’m far TOO big of a fan of Monopoly…long story short, there is a reason it is no longer an option for family game night. Dad, why didn’t you trade me Illinois Avenue for my B&O Railroad? Am I losing track of my mind? Yes? Okay, sorry, returning to my point…) I am a big fan of Monopoly. I understand when you own a property that someone else needs that they’re willing to pay up for it. The Yankees could’ve gotten an upgrade at catcher at a much smaller overall cost than what the Marlins traded.
The Miami Marlins just traded a 28-year-old starting pitcher who posted just a 0.8 bWAR in 2021 (3.24 ERA in 75.0 IP over 26 Games/14 starts) along with their #16 and #23 prospects for Jacob Stallings. The Yankees probably could’ve offered Domingo German, Yoendrys Gomez (Yankees #10), and Brandon Lockridge (#19) to get the deal done. At that point then Gary Sanchez becomes a desired commodity who you could trade to a team trying to contend in 2022 for a solid mid-rotation starting pitcher.
The Yankees are SILENT. I know December is coming soon, but if this SILENT NIGHT continues, I’m not going to be cheerfully wishing good tidings for Cashman & Co. this holiday season. Uggggg…