Brett Anderson Gets an Extension

Since debuting last season, Brett Anderson has been one of the game’s top starting pitchers. He’s posted a 3.61 FIP in 187 innings and heck, he’s even leading the American League in ERA right now. Oakland rewarded Anderson today by signing him to a four-year extension with two option years.

Financial terms are unavailable at this point, but honestly, it’s hard to sign a player this early in the service time game for this long without it being a team-friendly contract. Anderson has a bit more leverage than Evan Longoria did when he signed his extension, but not quite as much as Dan Haren did when he signed a four-year, $44.8M extension in 2008, a season after the Athletics traded him, and coincidentally received Anderson in return.

I believe Anderson would qualify for Super Two status, meaning the A’s are in effect buying out four arbitration years while holding the additional right to keeping Anderson off the free agent market for one season. Barring injury, this extension has the potential to look awfully sweet. So, why would Anderson and his agent do this deal, assuming it really is a sweetheart contract?

Well, the most obvious reason is that injuries and attrition do happen. Anderson could tear something tomorrow and never be the same. Wouldn’t matter, he’d still receive the money. There’s also the present and future value of money to consider. Anderson is probably (I’d use hopefully, but someone would accuse me of being a player’s union apologist, I’m sure) getting an immediate raise either this or next season.

Oakland is definitely not without risk in this deal. If it works out, they’re going to look quite smart and be praised for their foresight. If it doesn’t … well, Eric Chavez’s contract already happened. Look at the repercussions from that.




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10 Responses to “Brett Anderson Gets an Extension”

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  1. Jay says:

    From the AP:

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) – Left-hander Brett Anderson and the
    Oakland Athletics have agreed to a $12.5 million, four-year
    contract that could be worth $31 million over six seasons.
    Anderson receives a $1 million signing bonus, payable in equal
    installments on Aug. 5, Nov. 1, March 1 and Nov. 1, 2011. He gets
    $500,000 this year, $1 million next year, $3 million in 2012 and
    $5.5 million in 2013, and Oakland has options for $8 million in
    2014 and $12 million in 2015.
    If either option is declined, he would get a $1.5 million
    buyout. Oakland must decide within 10 days of the end of the season
    whether to exercise the following year’s option.
    Anderson’s deal replaces a one-year contract reached in February
    that called for salaries of $410,000 in the majors and $240,000 in
    the minors.
    A 2008 U.S. Olympian, Anderson went 11-11 with a 4.06 ERA in his
    rookie season for the A’s last year. He threw 175 1-3 innings and
    struck out 150 batters to just 45 walks. He is 1-0 in two starts
    this season.

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  2. Paul Thomas says:

    Anderson was called up in April of last year and got a full year of service time. As such, he was to have been eligible for arbitration after the 2011 season and to have been a free agent after 2014.

    This deal buys out the two remaining pre-arb years and two arbitration years, with options for year 3 and his first free agent season.

    His deal is less team-favorable than James Shields’ deal, but perhaps that’s understandable since he seems like a better prospect than Shields was at the point in Shields’ career when he signed his long-term contract.

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    • BX says:

      I also think Anderson had more service time than Shields when the deal was signed–which would be a major factor.

      That’s just going back on the service time mistake from last year… waiting a month in (what should have been****) a noncontending/rebuilding season to call him up would have REALLY helped.

      ****Yes, hindsight is 20/20, and yes, the A’s were trying to contend, as evidenced by that godawful Matt Holliday trade.

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  3. Larry says:

    I think like Tim Hudson, Mark Mulder, the A’s will look ride him through his late 20s and when the innings pile up, trade him for prospects when people assume Anderson still has a lot of pitching left.

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  4. TJ says:

    I’ve got a crazy theory that he will be traded in 3 1/2 years. Just a hunch.

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  5. TedWilson says:

    When will the A’s win something? This isn’t a game of getting the most wins/dollar. It is about winning hardware. Where is their hardware?

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    • BX says:

      Fail.

      A’s = 6th winningest team of the last decade.

      5 playoff appearances, one ALDS championship (2006), 3 AL West titles (2002, 2003, 2006).

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  6. Wow says:

    This writer actually has no idea what he is talking about. Anderson would not qualify as a super two and this deal at most buys our 1 year of FA while providing 12 million guaranteed. In contrast, Evan Longoria signed a 6 year contract with three option years that take away two years of FA and pay him an average of less than Brett, for those six even though Brett’s is for an earlier portion of his career. The Haren example is ridiculous, it has no basis in comparison two a pre-arbitration signing. This writer does not know baseball.

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