Varitek Ends Up Where He Left Off

“There will be a buyout with the team option, but Paul Maholm should also offer a discount for signing a secure deal, so three years at about $14 million would normally be my guess, with a team option for $9 million and a $1 million buyout.” – Me on Thursday

On Friday morning the financial details were finally leaked. Maholm actually signed a three-year contract worth a guaranteed $14.5 million and came with a $9.75 million club option for 2012, the buyout for that option is $750,000. I would say that was a pretty close guess, although I did undershoot it a bit.

Moving on, the Jason Varitek free agency escapade came to a close finally in the only way that it seemed possible (aside from retirement), re-signing with the Red Sox. After the year Varitek had in 2008, he was always going to face a depressed interest, but combined with the plummeting free agent economy and made worse by teams being thrifty not only with their money but with their draft picks as well, a perfect storm was created for Type A free agent Jason Varitek that led to just two realistic conclusions.

Because of that, the Red Sox got a pretty sweet deal out of Varitek. $5 million for 2009 and a mutual option for 2010 that should guarantee Varitek at least $3 million should he choose to exercise it after the team declines. Make no mistake, Varitek was bad last year, but even in that season, the sheer scarcity of catchers made him worth $5.6 million by our measure.

There’s a real chance that Varitek is done, and that he may even get worse from his 2008 line (his BB/K and LD ratios were well down), but most projection systems see a slight bounce back in offense this season and he’s right on the edge around two wins as a projection. That upside (term being used loosely, but not sarcastically, here) helps balance out the collapse potential and overall, it’s a good deal for Boston.



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Matthew Carruth is a software engineer who has been fascinated with baseball statistics since age five. When not dissecting baseball, he is watching hockey or playing soccer.


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Joe
Guest
7 years 4 months ago

Are “WAR” and “WARP1” the same thing? I have heard people use “WAR” on this site.

Terminator X
Guest
Terminator X
7 years 4 months ago

No they are not. I’m not sure the exact differences, but WARP is generally considered outdated and less accurate/encompassing than WAR.

Terminator X
Guest
Terminator X
7 years 4 months ago

Re-read your post and I’m actually not sure what WARP1 is (as compared to WARP), but I strongly suspect that my previous post still applies.

alskor
Guest
alskor
7 years 4 months ago

You know, the Sox must use a valuation system pretty close to what you guys have. Nearly every one of the guys they signed seems to sign for 75-85% of what you would project their value going forward would be.

Steve
Guest
Steve
7 years 4 months ago

Still need to go out and find a young catcher. There will be a bidding war for Mauer in a few years, and it would be nice to not be a part of it.

My dream is for the Orioles to have a brain cramp and offer up Weiters for Bucholz. I know it will never happen, it is as likely as Weiters being traded for a bag of sand, but we can all have dreams right?

Joe
Guest
7 years 4 months ago

I still wonder if the time was now to address the future of the catching position though. The Rangers have one of two catchers available, and the DBacks have another catcher available. The Red Sox are going to need to address this anyway, and if not this season, probably next season. Montero makes sense because he bats left handed, and Varitek (if last season is any indication) cannot hit from the left side anymore. That would mean that Montero would receive more playing time on a straight lefty/righty platoon. At worst they would probably split time.

Skoodog
Guest
Skoodog
7 years 4 months ago

It doesn’t make sense why Rangers wouldn’t deal w/ the Sox – they have 3 solid catcher options w/ Salty, Max and Teagarden…They are also loaded at 1B (Davis, Smoak) so it doesn’t make sense to run one of them over to first…Meanwhile Milwood’s arm creaks every time he throws a pitch and their going to move Fireball Feliz to the pen…Maintaining the same offensively loaded but arm-desolate team because they can’t figure out the old adage that pitching beats hitting.

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