“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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