Contract Crowdsourcing: Manny Ramirez

It’s perhaps the most interesting free agent question of the winter: does Manny Ramirez land a job this winter? He can still hit, even if he is no longer the dominating force at the plate he was a few years ago. However, injuries and suspensions have kept him off the field for large parts of the past two seasons, and once again, his time with an organization ended poorly. His reputation for being aloof is well known, and to top it off, he’s still a brutal defender who probably needs to be relegated to DH’ing at this point in his career, limiting his potential suitors mostly to AL teams. Oh, also, he’ll be 39 next year.

There are a lot of reasons to think that Ramirez won’t be able to find work this winter. There’s one big reason to think he will: he can still hit. Even in a down year, he’s put up a .306/.409/.472 line. That kind of offensive performance is not easy to find, and a potentially healthy Ramirez is likely to still be among the best hitters in the game next year, even at an advanced age. He’s less than what he used to be, but still far more than a lot of major league hitters.

It’s not a great year to be a DH looking for a job, given the other bat-only options that will be available this winter, but Ramirez probably carries the best bat of the bunch. He also carries the most baggage. I could see teams pursuing him in an attempt to bolster their offense, and I could see the entire league saying “no thanks”, essentially doing to Manny what teams did to Gary Sheffield last winter.

So, I’ve added a new option to the contract crowdsourcing form – 0 years and 0 dollars per year. If you think Manny will not be able to find work this winter, select those from the drop-down menu. Otherwise, the form is the same, and you guys can project what Ramirez will get as a bat for hire this winter.



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Dave is the Managing Editor of FanGraphs.


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Xeifrank
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

I went with 1 year, $12M. Perhaps overly optimistic that some AL team will overpay for one year of DH.

Ben
Guest
Ben
5 years 8 months ago

Yeah I said 1 and $11 million. My best guess is the White Sox bring him back, seeking to avoid making the same mistake they did when they let Thome go and entered the season with no legitimate DH.

Erik
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

Wow, that is a lot of money.

I think more and more MLB teams are being reluctant to hand out deals like you suggested – so I am not so sure this happens.

Eric
Guest
Eric
5 years 8 months ago

I don’t think that will happen either, it’s been suggested though that David Ortiz is a 10-12 million player though so if Manny heats up who knows? But right now I don’t see 11 million at all.

My echo and bunnymen
Guest
My echo and bunnymen
5 years 8 months ago

I choose 1 year and $5 million, for the sole reason that he’ll be a DH but no one else will touch him. He’ll most likely resign with the White Sox but I don’t doubt he’ll test the waters first.

Shane
Member
Member
Shane
5 years 8 months ago

I thought the same thing, the White Sox will want him back, and he could probably produce that value if on the field.

pogotheostrich
Guest
pogotheostrich
5 years 8 months ago

I don’t think he is playing next year. Not because no one is interested but because I don’t think he ego let’s him accept a 1 year deal at a huge pay cut.

Eric
Guest
Eric
5 years 8 months ago

That’s a good point, he didn’t seem exactly excited about his last deal with the Dodgers.

Derek
Guest
Derek
5 years 8 months ago

This was my thought exactly. I put 0/0 not because I don’t think he’ll get an offer (I’m guessing he’ll get some Thome/Guerrero-type offers), but because he is Manny and he’ll play it as insulted and walk away from those offers. I could see him trying to make a mid-season comeback if a contender needs a DH.

Eric
Guest
Eric
5 years 8 months ago

I think he’ll sign for something. The White Sox thought it was worth 4 million to have Manny for 1 month and so it seems like someone will pay him something. He is putting up a .384 wOBA from LF/DH. But age and moving to DH will probably bring that number down quite a bit, from The Ray Area: “Manny doesn’t help the Rays because he needs to play in the outfield to hit for power.[…] Playing DH takes a lot of mental fortitude because it requires a player to stay engaged in the game even though he is only participating three or four times. And, when we think of Manny’s legacy, I doubt the words “mental” and “fortitude” will be anywhere near each other.”
http://therayarea.com/manny-being-on-waivers

Piccamo
Guest
Piccamo
5 years 8 months ago

Was it 2007 where he played DH for the Red Sox while Ortiz was on the shelf? I don’t remember the exact time frame, but I seem to remember him keeping up (if not improving) his regular batting line.

The Duder
Guest
The Duder
5 years 8 months ago

I don’t know if I buy this, for Manny’s case at least.

Manny playing outfield = approximately the same level of engagement/exercise/heartrate as Manny sitting on the bench.

Misfit
Member
Misfit
5 years 8 months ago

He’ll be offerred something, for sure. Probably by the White Sox and maybe another team. It wouldn’t shock me to see Oakland kick the tires on him. However, these offers will all be for one year and in the neighborhood of 4 million. Perhaps someone will be nice enough to tack on some incentives that could raise the value of the deal to something close to 8 or 10 million but, regardless, I don’t think Manny will accept.

MikeS
Guest
MikeS
5 years 8 months ago

Memories are short. He’s done nothing since coming over to the White Sox. Zero extra base hits. 33% K-rate. Small sample size, but a similar small sample size had everybody excited when he went from the Red Sox to Dodgers. Unless he turns that around quick then when it’s combined with his inability to play the field and inability to stay on the field due to many reasons, I see some team taking a flyer on him with a one year incentive laden lowball contract.

Shauntell47
Guest
Shauntell47
5 years 8 months ago

12M, i doubt it, especially since he´s injury-prone, even at DH.

I definitely think a team will pick him up though, i went for 1 year 7M.

The Duder
Guest
The Duder
5 years 8 months ago

This is tough.

With Jeter and VMart, I had idea of the range I thought they would get and split the difference… but with Manny the zero factor is hard to account.

I voted 1/8 (and there’s no way he signs for less than 6), but at the same time I think there is a 30-40% chance he is doneski.

Piccamo
Guest
Piccamo
5 years 8 months ago

I think 2 years at $7MM per year. He’s still an excellent hitter, despite what his small sample in Chicago would suggest and it will likely require a second year to get him to sign somewhere.

Eric
Guest
Eric
5 years 8 months ago

I’d be surprised to see two years, that would take a masterpiece by Boras (could happen though, he’s quite good at his job.)

grady
Guest
grady
5 years 8 months ago

I said 1Y/4MM simply because there isn’t an “or” option. There’s a pretty good shot that he gets 0Y/0MM, but if he does sign (which I put at ~75%?), I can see something like 1Y/5-6.5MM, so my parallel universe theory says that the average contract that he gets would be something like .8Y/$5MM or something stupid like that. Whatever, it makes sense to me.

Matty Brown
Guest
Matty Brown
5 years 8 months ago

1 year/12 million

He could very easily produce a .280/380/480 line next season as a DH. That projection would be a low-end number as well. At US Cellular he could easily exceed that.

I think he and Guillen would make a good pair; and the White Sox letting Thome go to the Twins is a very significant reason why they and Mark Kotsay are going to finish behind the Twins again.

Eric
Guest
Eric
5 years 8 months ago

I don’t know if there will be a large enough market for 12 million –especially if he doesn’t start well performing more — but really is there enough demand to make him stand out that far ahead all the other player’s who would like to be someone’s full time DH?

John
Guest
John
5 years 8 months ago

The Twins are just a substantially better team. Losing Thome to the Twins hurt of course, but the Twins are simply better this season and it isn’t even very close. Adding Manny won’t go far towards changing that, particularly if Manny decides to mail it in if he feels unhappy playing for a one year deal.

Matty Brown
Guest
Matty Brown
5 years 8 months ago

…and let’s be realistic…Manny ain’t signing anywhere for less than 12 Mil. That would be a pure waste of time.

Erik
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

My personal opinion – he will get something around $5-8 million with a significant amount of incentives in the contract.

The Duder
Guest
The Duder
5 years 8 months ago

Yea, the people throwing out numbers in the 10+ range need to realize that

A. Only AL teams will be bidding
B. The Yanks and Sox won’t be

This eliminates tons of the potential demand, and there are really only a select handful of places he will end up, and of those, only 1 maybe 2 are medium-big market teams. When you’re an FA in that scenario, you ain’t getting paid the max… and 12 is by far and away the max you’d want to pay for Manny even if you knew ahead of time he’d play 150 games and wouldn’t completely decline into normal year 40 territory.

Piccamo
Guest
Piccamo
5 years 8 months ago

Why wouldn’t the Yankees be bidding?

John
Guest
John
5 years 8 months ago

Jesus Montero?

Derek
Guest
Derek
5 years 8 months ago

Not to mention Carl Crawford or Jayson Werth. If the Yankees get either of those guys then they will have Crawford/Werth, Gardner, Granderson, and Swisher for four outfield spots, meaning that they will need to rotate them in the DH spot, or just outright DH Swisher.

John
Guest
John
5 years 8 months ago

I went 0/0.

I don’t think that he will accept any offers that are made. I think he will be shocked how soft the market is for him and will not accept that little of money.

I think the best he could do is 1 for 4-5 mil.

noseeum
Guest
noseeum
5 years 8 months ago

Oops, I didn’t see this comment before I posted. Same here John.

sc0regasm
Guest
sc0regasm
5 years 8 months ago

1 yr / 4 mil guaranteed with enough incentive to make him actually try to earn his money

noseeum
Guest
noseeum
5 years 8 months ago

I chose 0 and 0 because I don’t think he’ll accept any offer he will get. I don’t see him signing for less than $10 million, and I don’t see him being offered $10 million.

todmod
Guest
todmod
5 years 8 months ago

I went 1 for 8, but have to say 0 for 0 is about as likely – if his offers are for 4-6 mil I can easily see him declining altogether.

Jermaine Dye was much less accomplished, is thought to be less of a headcase, and he decided a cheap 1 year deal wasn’t good enough for him. And while Scott Boras is fantastic at getting his players the best deal, lowering his client’s expectations isn’t exactly his strong suit.

cs3
Guest
cs3
5 years 8 months ago

im going with 1 yr/9m.

an incentive loaded contract with a base salary around 6m that tops out near 12m would be a good move for many AL teams, but i doubt Manny would ever go for it.

Jim Lahey
Guest
Jim Lahey
5 years 8 months ago

I agree. IF he signs. Based on what we all know of Manny.. him playing for less than $15m is unlikely, but realistically if he does keeps playing, i think he gets 1yr/9m+incentives (lots and lots of incentives).

Captain
Guest
Captain
5 years 8 months ago

Detroit maybe? 1 year deal. i put down $5M but i can see him retiring instead of taking that paycut.

Matt Zakrowski
Member
5 years 8 months ago

I said 7 mil for one year. Can’t wait to see results.

Steve N
Guest
5 years 8 months ago

1 year 10 million

Cheese Whiz
Guest
Cheese Whiz
5 years 8 months ago

Wow, I’ve got to say I’m pretty surprised by the comments here. Yeah, Manny has his warts… but he can still put up a .400 wOBA, and that has value. I put 2 yr @ 9 million and I’d really be surprised if he got significantly less.

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