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Jeremy Guthrie wants a three-year, $34 million deal

Nov 7, 2012, 4:46 PM EDT

Jeremy Guthrie AP

Three months ago the Rockies traded Jeremy Guthrie to the Royals for Jonathan Sanchez, which is basically like giving him away for nothing except way, way worse.

Guthrie then had a nice 14-start stretch for the Royals and now Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star reports that he’s seeking a three-year, $34 million contract as a free agent. General manager Dayton Moore understandably sounds like he’s ready to pursue other targets.

Guthrie is a solid enough pitcher and has been durable, throwing at least 175 innings in six straight seasons, but he’s a 34-year-old with a 4.28 career ERA that includes a 4.76 mark this year and a 4.38 mark in 2011.

If that’s worth $34 million over three years then some team is going to have to just offer Zack Greinke majority ownership of the franchise or something.

  1. geoknows - Nov 7, 2012 at 4:50 PM

    Yeah, good luck with that, Jeremy.

  2. hackerjay - Nov 7, 2012 at 5:12 PM

    Well, over his career Guthrie has averaged about 2 WAR a year, and over the last few years free agents have made about $5 million per WAR. 2 WAR * $5 million * 3 years = $30 million. Basically he’s asking for an average contract for someone with his level of production.

    I don’t think it would be a great deal by any stretch of the imagination, but it wouldn’t be an unbelievably bad one either.

    • paperlions - Nov 7, 2012 at 7:52 PM

      The problem with that logic, is that buying wins in the FA market is the most expensive place to buy them….AND, most importantly, all WAR are not created equal. The first 2 WAR are pretty cheap, because there are a crap ton of guys around (especially starting pitchers) that can give you 2 WAR for cheap. Then next 2 WAR are a little more expensive, because there are fewer 3-4 WAR players, and any wins above that are much more expensive. In short, it isn’t a linear relationship between cost and wins.

      • hackerjay - Nov 7, 2012 at 8:37 PM

        Obviously wins are most expensive in the free agent market. I wasn’t saying that a team should pay the going free agent rate for Guthrie, I was just saying that he is asking for the going rate.

        It might seem like all wins are not created equal, but that isn’t how Major League teams view them when signing free agents. Free agents cost/1 WAR has held pretty much linear ever since WAR came around. Here’s one article that talks about it:

        http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/index.php/linear-dollars-per-win-again/

        Again, I’m not saying signing Guthrie for 3/$30 is a good idea. I’m just saying that there is a definite relationship between WAR and free agent salary, and it has been shown to be more or less linear.

      • paperlions - Nov 8, 2012 at 9:04 AM

        Actually, that is exactly how MLB teams see WAR. That is why elite players get the big money, and players one step down get far far less. For a short time that wasn’t true, and teams handed out a lot of silly contracts, only to realize that they didn’t need to because there are so many guys that can put up 2 WAR available for cheap. That is why the “price of WAR” in the FA market has steadily declined over the last several seasons. WAR doesn’t drive the market, supply and demand does…and there is a large supply of 2 WAR players available every year.

    • forsch31 - Nov 7, 2012 at 8:55 PM

      >>>” 2 WAR * $5 million * 3 years = $30 million.”

      Maybe I’m misreading this but…3 years at 5 million equals 15 million, not 30 million.

      • foreverchipper10 - Nov 8, 2012 at 9:23 AM

        2 war times 5 million PER WAR (which gives you 10) times 3 years equals 30 mil. :)

  3. proudlycanadian - Nov 7, 2012 at 5:14 PM

    After their salary dump, the Red Sox can now afford him, and as a bonus, he has experience losing when pitching against AL East teams.

  4. mattyflex - Nov 7, 2012 at 5:40 PM

    I was hoping Kansas City would re-sign him for two years in the $10-14 million range, this is absurd.

  5. edelmanfanclub - Nov 7, 2012 at 6:04 PM

    I think Coors Field hurt his year more than people understand.

    Coors:1-5, 41 2/3 IP, 9.50 ERA
    Everywhere but Coors: 7-7, 140 IP, 3.34 ERA

    Also the trade to KC did him well

    COL: 76 ERA+, -0.4 WAR, 1.69 WHIP
    KC: 130 ERA+, 1.7 WAR, 1.13 WHIP

    His WAR was over 3.5 in 07, 08, 10. And he pitched 200+ IP from 09-11. I mean he’s probably not worth 11 mill over 3 years.

    But probably could get something like 21-25 over 3 or 15-18 over 2.

    • hackerjay - Nov 7, 2012 at 6:23 PM

      One otehr thing I found interesting when I looked at Guthrie’s stats is that in the six years since he came up for good he’s 15th in the majors in innings pitched. That’s pretty impressive.

      • edelmanfanclub - Nov 7, 2012 at 9:54 PM

        You could probably argue he’s worth 11 million considering elite pitchers get north of 20 million. and if a quality start is 6 IP 3 ER (4.50 ERA). His career ERA is below that. maybe he is worth 11 million? I wouldn’t give it to him but it wouldn’t be the craziest contract I’ve seen.

  6. modellforprez - Nov 7, 2012 at 6:38 PM

    this 34 yr.old douche bag was fargin 8-12?? and this retard really thinks he’s gettin 3yrs. and 34 milli. I bet you all the hair on my ass, he only did this so the pittsburgh pi-RATS wouldn’t attempt to sign him… nefs ike

  7. nickhoberg - Nov 7, 2012 at 7:26 PM

    I would take him on the Twins in a second.

  8. brewcitybummer - Nov 8, 2012 at 6:56 AM

    Jeff Suppan, Doug Davis, Randy Wolf…Jeremy Guthrie? This seems right in Doug Melvin’s wheelhouse and it terrifies me.

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