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What will it take to keep Adrian Gonzalez?

Dec 4, 2010, 1:52 PM EDT

San Diego Padres Photo Day

Now that the Red Sox have reached a tentative agreement to acquire Adrian Gonzalez from the Padres in exchange for right-hander Casey Kelly, first baseman Anthony Rizzo, outfielder Reymond Fuentes and a player to be named later, it’s time to ask how much money it will take to keep him for the long-term.

Jon Paul Morosi of tweeted this morning that Gonzalez wants a “Howard-like contract.” And as I mentioned earlier, if that’s the case, the Red Sox should be jumping for joy.

Of course, the Phillies were panned for signing Howard to a five-year, $125 million extension in March, so what’s the difference here? Well, the extension doesn’t even begin until the 2012 season. Howard will be 32 years old by then. Gonzalez, by contrast, doesn’t turn 29 years old until next May and has been the superior player to Howard over the past three seasons.

In the end, this comp may be all wrong. Rival executives and and agents told Buster Olney of this morning that Gonzalez is “very much in line” to ask for a seven or eight year contract worth between $20-23 million per season, which would put him very close to the eight-year, $180 million contract Mark Teixeira signed with the Yankees in December of 2008. Gonzalez compares more favorably to Teixeira than he does to Howard, so it’s not an unreasonable conclusion to make. Either way, this one stands a good chance to surpass Manny Ramirez’s eight-year, $160 million contract as the richest in franchise history.

  1. Ari Collins - Dec 4, 2010 at 3:09 PM

    If he’s asking for 5/125, I give him that. I mean, I try to negotiate him further down, but if that’s what it takes, I’m definitely willing to pay him a fair price for his late 20s and early 30s, if it keeps me from committing to too much of his mid-30s.

  2. Old Gator - Dec 4, 2010 at 10:55 PM

    All it takes to keep Friendo, my pet baby pygmy rattlesnake, is a plexiglass slide-top terrarium for about $26, a bag of coconut fiber chip substrate for about $7, a water bowl for $4, a masonite hiding cave for $9, an under-tank heating pad for $11 and a mouse fuzzy for two bucks once a week. They ought to let Votto walk – he blows off children looking for autographs if they’re not wearing a Reds cap anyway, the asshole – and get themselves a pet baby pygmy rattlesnake.

    • Old Gator - Dec 4, 2010 at 10:56 PM

      Oops, wrong thread, isn’t it? Now how the hell did that happen? It’s either getting late or I’m getting old(er). Okay, use your imagination and transpose the above to the “Joey Votto is in No Hurry” thread.

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