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Cy Young award earns Felix Hernandez an extra $2.5 million

Nov 19, 2010, 4:16 PM EDT

Felix Hernandez

Lost in the debate about the value of win-loss records or sabermetrics versus old-school is that winning the Cy Young award yesterday earned Felix Hernandez a whole bunch of extra money thanks to incentives in his contract.

Hernandez receives a $1 million bonus for winning the award and his salaries for the next three seasons rise by $500,000 per year, for a grand total of $2.5 million.

Not a bad haul for winning something voted on by 28 writers.

  1. uyf1950 - Nov 19, 2010 at 4:23 PM

    Music to a Yankee fans ears. Going to be tough for the Mariners to swallow that payroll after next year when it hits over $20M per. Prime trading material, I’m sure the Yankees will just be waiting.

    • easports82 - Nov 19, 2010 at 4:27 PM

      With all due respect, sir, blow it out your ass.

      • uyf1950 - Nov 19, 2010 at 4:33 PM

        Why so hostile easports82? I’m only expressing my opinion, just like every other poster who posts on these sites. That is unless you know/think I’m right, in which case you should take out your frustration the the Mariners and their ownership.

      • easports82 - Nov 19, 2010 at 4:46 PM

        Won’t let me reply directly. Anyways, you’re correct, it was a little hostile. I forgot to write ‘kindly blow it out your ass’.

        My annoyance, as a Mariner fan first, is that we came off another horrible season and the only bright spot now has this specter of Yankees fans thinking they’re entitled to him. Which takes me to my annoyance as a baseball fan where the perception of Yankee fans/management appears (to me) to be that all of MLB is a farm team for them. That pisses me off.

        Can’t even focus on just trying to over pay for Cliff Lee; you’re already jumping out to guys who aren’t free agents for 4 years.

      • uyf1950 - Nov 19, 2010 at 5:22 PM

        To easports82 – I find your comment about Cliff Lee and the Yankees pursuit of him a bit hypocritical. Considering it was the Mariners who were trying to squeeze every “last ounce of blood” out of teams that were interested in him prior to the trade deadline. But I guess I would be hostile and resentful of teams like the Yankees and their fans too if I rooted for the Mariners.

        You should keep in mind however that for every team that’s a buyer there has to be a team willing to sell. Without sellers there are no buyers.

  2. Reflex - Nov 19, 2010 at 4:31 PM

    The M’s are one of the high revenue teams(don’t confuse poor performance with low payroll). They also have a ton of money thats come off the books the past couple seasons and is coming off the books over the next couple seasons. Felix is considered affordable. I don’t see any scenario where he goes to the Yanks, but keep dreaming. Payroll last season was only $85 mil, down from a high of almost $120 mil in 2008. And this is before the remains of Silva’s contract, Bradley’s and Beltre’s are subtracted.

    The M’s are in a position to spend over the next few years. The question for them is whether or not they’ll have a core to build around. Whatever core they may start with, Felix is at the center of it.

    • uyf1950 - Nov 19, 2010 at 4:42 PM

      Merely an observation on my part. As for dreaming we will see what happens after the 2011 season and see how affordable King Felix is for the Mariners.

      • Reflex - Nov 19, 2010 at 6:54 PM

        To be honest, its a ridiculous ‘observation’ in that it contained nothing of substance at all. And yeah, it made you look like the stereotype of the entitled Yankees fan.

        And no, I’m not a M’s ‘fan’, I just happen to live in Seattle where they play. I prefer NL ball myself. I’d be just as annoyed if you were going on about Adam Wainwright or some other star pitcher with a contract.

        Your statement about the M’s squeezing every last bit out for Lee is silly, of course they did, thats what quality GM’s do. The Yanks weren’t willing to ante up for Lee, and it sure did cost them thier season. No way the Rangers beat the Yanks if they had Lee on their side rather than against them.

      • uyf1950 - Nov 19, 2010 at 8:23 PM

        Reflex, your entitled to your opinion. Just so we are clear. You think it’s OK for GM’s of teams like Seattle to “squeeze” other GM’s because they are “hard Up” for a player that may be on that teams roster, but it’s not OK for a team like the Yankees to squeeze a team for a player when that other team might not have the long term resources to satisfy that players needs, such as winning or money. It seems to me that you are the one with a sense of entitlement, only certain teams are allowed to play by your rules. But like I said when I started this reply, you’re entitled to your opinion, it’s unfortunate that you don’t think I’m entitled to mine.

      • Reflex - Nov 19, 2010 at 8:50 PM

        You are setting up a false dichotomy. I never once said I think that the Yankees should not try to drive the best bargain they can in any trade they make. The only person saying that is you. My point was that Felix is signed for a rate that is affordable, especially for a upper tier club like the Mariners. The M’s don’t go on salary dumps, just look at the Silva deal. The only reason Felix would be traded is if the M’s felt it was in their best interests, and as the Lee deal proved they don’t operate as a farm team for the Yanks like some other clubs seem to.

        Speculating on a player four years out from free agency, and creating some stupid fanboy “prime trading material” based on the fact that apparantly you don’t even know the M’s payroll and income levels(as I said above, they are one of the top revenue clubs and typically have a top ten payroll) makes the basis for your speculation groundless and your ‘opinion’ as you like to term it, worthless.

        I never said you cannot hold a worthless opinion, of course. You have every right to. But don’t expect more informed fans not to mock you for doing so. Your statement would have made a whole lot more sense in the context of a thread about someone like Josh Johnson, where the team owner is a known cheapskate who gets out of even advantageous contracts. But most clubs do not operate that way, including the M’s.

        And yes, when I see someone make douchy fanboyish comments I will call them on it. I’ve spent plenty of time calling the Phils fans on similiar behaviour when they make statements about the Yanks, and I see the Lee situation the same way with Rangers fans.

      • uyf1950 - Nov 19, 2010 at 9:10 PM

        Reflex – Like I said you are entitled to your opinion. You may be right about Felix’s contract and the Mariners ability and desire to keep him and you may not be. Since neither of us is privy to the thinking of Seattle’s management nor can we see into the future, only time will tell.

      • Reflex - Nov 20, 2010 at 1:24 AM

        A team who has demonstrated a payroll capacity of around $120 million is going into the season after next with a payroll guaranteed of about $60 million. You were the one who implied that the Felix contract was unaffordable to a team that is top 6 in MLB income wise, and with a payroll that has been among the elites. Up to you to prove your case. All I did was refute your assertion. You seem to get hurt that people dare challenge you and your attitude.

        I’m not upset, I just want you to prove you have a semblence of intelligent thought behind your apparantly baseless assertions. Until then, I will amuse myself that apparantly some Yankees fans are so jealous of other teams that they invent magic trade scenarios in thier heads.

      • uyf1950 - Nov 20, 2010 at 7:19 AM

        Reflex – As I said early we shall see what the future holds. One final comment on the subject of the Mariners. Have you ever wondered or tried to amuse yourself on how successful the decade of the 2000′s might have been for the Mariners had they not let ARod and Ken Griffey Jr. slip through through their hands in successive years after 1999 & 2000 they may not have lost that 2001 ALCS to the Yankees. I guess all the money in the world that the Mariners owners (Nintendo) have or could have spent on retaining 2 athletes at the height of their careers couldn’t entice them to stay.

    • uyf1950 - Nov 20, 2010 at 11:24 AM

      To Reflex – I do have one final, final comment. I neglected to mention Randy Johnson. Apparently the Mariners didn’t think it was worthwhile to make him an offer he couldn’t refuse to keep him in the fold either. Letting him go at the trade deadline in 1998. During Johnson’s 9+ years with Seattle he had a 130-74 win, loss record and the 6 full season following his departure and arrival in Arizona he had a 104-49 win, loss record. Let’s summarize, over the course of 3 seasons 1998, 1999 and 2000 the Mariners with all of Nintendo’s money chose not to make offers that would keep in Seattle 3 of baseballs premier players (Randy Johnson, ARod & Ken Griffy Jr.) that were at/in the height of their careers. I’m sure if you reply you have have some explanation like they were going to leave anyway or they weren’t good in the clubhouse. But we both know those are just excuses. Throw enough money at ballplayers and they will play anywhere. One could question the motives behind Seattle’s decision not to retain some or all of these 3 players. But money has to be part of any objective persons evaluation.

      • Reflex - Nov 20, 2010 at 9:56 PM

        First off, to reiterate, I’m not an M’s fan. Your statements would have been equally baseless and offensive with almost any other club in the league. Why aren’t you speculating about Justin Verlander, who got more money from the Tigers, a club with lower revenue than the Mariners? Thats my point, your speculation makes zero sense to anyone who has any knoweldge of baseball outside of New York.

        As for the rest, both Johnson and Griffey demanded trades. Johnson was a great pitcher, and yes I agree that with him on the team in 2001 the M’s would have had a fantastic chance of winning it all. But as his career demonstrated(especially in New York as you should recall) he’s a prickly personality and when he makes up his mind about something its as good as a done deal.

        As for Griffey, he wanted to play back in his hometown. The M’s delt him and it turned out to be one of the best deals they made. The talent they got back formed the foundation of the 2001 record setting team, meanwhile Griffey spent the rest of his career alternating between mediocre batting averages and the DL. I do NOT see how that deal was a failure for the M’s at all, they did the classic “deal a star just before he enters career regression” perfectly. If anything, their failure to do that in the years that followed(most notable example being Bret Boone) is part of what sunk them as a long term contender.

        And A-Rod. Yes, A-Rod. Nobody here misses him. And regardless of how much money the M’s had, a $250 million deal would have been irresponsible. Just as the Yanks $300 million deal is irresponsible. The price paid could have put two other stars on the M’s roster, and in fact it did, it allowed them to pay well for future talent such as Beltre and Sexson.

        Unfortunatly for the M’s, the person who made those spending decisions was Bill Bavasi. Who spent it on Beltre and Sexson. And then made a lot of bad decisions in the draft. And then spent on Carlos Silva.

        What prevented the M’s from building a dynasty was not money, they have had plenty of that and still have plenty of that. What prevented them from doing so was poor management(Bavasi and Howard Lincoln) and an ownership group that could care less(Nintendo).

        But as I said above, I’m not an M’s fan. I just happen to be a baseball fan living in Seattle.

  3. Jonny 5 - Nov 19, 2010 at 4:42 PM

    Roy Halladay, Eat your frigging heart out with your measley 250k Cy young bonus.

  4. marinermousse - Nov 20, 2010 at 12:42 AM

    Having lived in New York and now living in Seattle, I can understand why New York Yankee fans want to feel they can buy all the top players. The Yankees payroll mirrors, in many ways the differences in the costs of living between NY and Seattle. New York City + New York State marginal income tax top rate around 11.3%. Sales tax about 8.875%, not sure about city property taxes, but when I lived on LI, they were close to 3% of the true market value of my home. Seattle…..NO city/state income tax, sales tax about 9.5%, property taxes about 1% of true market value.

    Clearly one city/state (Seattle/WA) seems to understand economics and be able to provide services and benefits to their citizens in a nice environment at reasonable costs and another (NYCity/NY) is saddled with the heritage of waste and corruption and continued inefficiency, and thus pays much more for minimal services.

    I guess the Yankees are lucky so far, that their TV revenue continues to buoy them up….but leverage works both ways and the days of $220mm salary for their team may begin to disappear slowly, just as the number of empty “plush” seats seemed to increase this year. I remember the 1982-1995 era of the New York Yankees. Coming up in the next 3-4 years will be Arod and Jeter walking onto the field with their canes, Petite and Posada gone and tons of holes to fill. Toronto and Baltimore, just as Tampa Bay has done, will demonstrate that skill can still allow a team with a $65-$110mm payroll to become competitive against the two evil empires of Boston and New York. My hunch is that while the Yankee Bravado continues, the fans in Tampa Bay and other cities who can’t just buy the best team in baseball, but actually have to work at it, realize much greater joy when their team wins knowing that the achievement is all the greater due to the huge disparity in economics.

    Texas made the Yankees look small. Of course if the Yankees had been able to get Cliff Lee from the Mariners in July (as Texas was able to do) my guess is that the results might have been reversed. Unfortunately the Yankees skills were lacking because they couldn’t just write a check for him!!

    • uyf1950 - Nov 20, 2010 at 6:51 AM

      To Marinermousse – I assume that since you remember the period from 1982 to 1995 you also remember that the Yankees had a winning record in 8 of those 13 years and that they in all likelihood would have made the post season in 1994 had it not been for the baseball strike since that year they were in 1st place at the time of the strike with a .619 winning percentage and had a 6.5 game lead over the Orioles and that in 1995 they did make the post season only to lose in the ALDS. If you carry your memory a few more years forward to 2001 you probably remember the Mariners record trying year with 116 regular season wins only to lose to the Yankees in the ALCS 4 games to 1. Fans of “other” teams and so called baseball expects have been predicting the demise of the Yankees for years and with the exception of a few short blips in their history it hasn’t happened yet and isn’t likely to happen again at least not in the foreseeable future.

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