The Figures Are What We Thought They Were!

The Boston Herald today on the Matsuzaka negotiations:

The Red Sox and Daisuke Matsuzaka still have nearly three weeks to come to terms on a contract, but preliminary indications are that the sides may have to overcome an initial gap as wide as the Pacific Ocean.

Riiiiight. Sources tell Massarotti that Boras is seeking roughly double what the Sox initially proposed. Using quick-and-easy math, that figures to roughly $7M/$14M or $8M/$16M — or exactly what we thought each side was seeking. So not exactly "oceans apart" as the headline says? Gotcha.

Is it really necessary for Tony Massarotti to doom-and-gloom up a story when simply adding context would actually serve the reader?

17 comments… add one
  • Shaughnessy school of journalism.

    Brad November 27, 2006, 12:21 pm
  • A few variables we don’t know here.
    If Boras wants a 3 yr. deal and then free agency for DMat, then at 15 mil. a year and 51.1 mil. for the bid that’s 96 mil for 3 yrs. or 32 mil. a year for DMAT…AAAARRRRGGGHHH!!!!
    OK, that can’t be the case. Let’s say a 4 yr. deal. Well, that’s 60 mil. for the contract and 51.1 for the bid for a grand total, and I do mean grand, of 111.1 mil or a yearly output of slightly under 28 mil. Gulp!. A little better but still enough money to make Larry Lucchino’s penis shrink to the size of something resembling a jelly bean, when he thinks about it.
    I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again. In this year of wild, crazy spending, does anybody think Scott Boras, the Prince of Darkness of sports agents, known for wringing the last nickle out of teams for himself and his clients, is going to be offering any good, cut-rate deals?
    How about a realistic guess for DMat’s contract. The Sox have to insist on at least a 4 yr. deal, to spread out that posting bid, so let’s say 4 yrs./44 mil. That would be middle ground between the two sides, less than Zito will get, less than what Oswalt already got, and certainly not out of bounds in this year’s market.
    So, were looking at about 95 mil. for DMat or slightly less than 24 mil. a year. HMMMMM….
    If you can pretend that posting fee doesn’t exist, then I guess 11 mil. a year for DMat would be acceptable, but somehow, I don’t think Henry, Lucchino, Werner and Theo are looking at it that way.

    whatever November 27, 2006, 9:50 pm
  • I’m sure, of those, Theo at least is looking at it that way. His job is to deal with the monetary issues in regards to team payroll. In his mind, the only number that will matter for his other plans is the $11M/yr. That’s really the only number that matters for the rest of the offseason. Personally, as far as I’m concerned, it’s an exorbitant amount, but if John Henry is happy to plop down $51M for negotiation rights…well. Then I am too.

    Quo November 27, 2006, 10:00 pm
  • Quo,
    Spoken like a true Yank…er…Red Sox fan.

    whatever November 27, 2006, 10:07 pm
  • any good, cut-rate deals?
    WE – it’s just a thought, and I’ve stood by it since it happened, but do you think it’s strickly coincidence that Drew left LA the same week, walking out on a pretty good contract no less, and the Sox won the rights to talk to Matsuzuka?
    I happen to think there is something fishy between Drew, Boras, and the Red Sox that involves the contracts of Drew and Matsuzuka. So, Boras may not be offering any “deals” to the Sox for Matsuzuka, but he very well could be offering something for the promise to take Drew at a high price as well. He’d more than make up the money Drew walked out on in LA.
    I dunno, it’s just my own thought. Something tells me that when they announce Drew’s signing, if they do, Matsuzuka will follow closely thereafter. Oh, and something will go down with Manny shortly thereafter. If the Drew deal goes down, I’d think the rest of the deals are going to be right behind it.
    If so, then my assumptions are correct about the fishy thing – especially if Matsuzuka signs for less than we think he will, for instance 9mill/per.

    Brad November 27, 2006, 10:10 pm
  • WE, what am I supposed to be doing? Calling John Henry an idiot? Questioning my team’s semi-over-zealous bid for the rights to a pitcher who would otherwise not be available at all? I’ve got my reservations about Matsuzaka, but $51M of John Henry’s money isn’t one of them. I’m not entirely enheartened by the whole process, but it’s not as if they can retract their bid at this point. It’s done. There’s no point lamenting it. It’s a huge one-time price for the right to negotiate with Matsuzaka. It’s not part of the same books as they keep player salaries/expenditures in, it’s part of the same books as the Green Monster seats or the improvements to the surrounding neighborhood of Fenway. Thinking about it the way you are is pretty ridiculous, and clearly an attempt to…heck. I don’t know what you’re trying to accomplish.
    The $51M isn’t for some roided-up goon, it’s for a pitcher with upside who, barring injury, is coming into the prime of his career. More correctly, it’s to compensate the Lions for letting him go.

    Quo November 27, 2006, 10:17 pm
  • Easy does it there Quo. It’s always been the Yankee fans that have had to be ambivalent about their teams spending large sums of money. I was only joking. Relax and don’t piss me off.

    whatever November 27, 2006, 10:38 pm
  • Brad,
    I’m sure that Scott Boras would be more than happy to play a little quid pro quo with the Sox.

    whatever November 27, 2006, 10:43 pm
  • knowing that the Sox have wanted Drew for two years, knowing that they were definitely not going to resign Trot, and knowing that the Sox won the rights to talk to Matsuzuka, Boras knew he could put his eggs in a basket labeled Boston on this one.
    He knows they are going to have to pay Drew based on his own salary predictions for OF’ers this FA season, he knows they wanted him, he knows that Drew will fit in with the guys in those OF seats there. I would guess that the Matsuzuka contract is just a bonus for him..
    He could make twenty million plus in one day between the two players on salary percentages alone. It’s a good thing this Boras guy has going this month.

    Brad November 27, 2006, 10:52 pm
  • …i keep hearing that the contracts of [at least 2] players and even the negotiating rights bid are perhaps somehow linked in some sinister way…call me naive for not believing that there could be something nefarious in this whole process, but i find it hard to believe, even if you buy that the parties involved are a bunch of rats, that boras would throw one player under the bus for the sake of another player…2 things to remember: dm may not speak good english, but i suspect he’s not a dope, and the players union, among others, will be watching these transactions carefully to insure that there is no hanky panky…

    dc November 27, 2006, 11:34 pm
  • it wouldn’t exactly be “hanky panky” if the Red Sox did sign him at 8mill/per, DC. After all, he’s never thrown a pitch yet. Boras being a good businessman here with Drew and DM doesn’t mean it’s a low move. In the end, he got one player a better deal, and another his first MLB contract. I hardly doubt that the union sees this as a bad move – and, is DM even in the union yet? Doesn’t he have to actually be in the leauge first to be in the union. What would they cry about – Drew getting more money?

    Brad November 27, 2006, 11:39 pm
  • I brought this rumor up a while ago, and it still makes sense to me. The Sox want something — four to five years on Matsuzaka at a reasonable rate (considering the unknowns, the posting fee, etc.) and a topline defensive right fielder/No. 5 hitter. Boras wants the big payday from Drew and a foothold in the Japanese player market. He gives a little on Daisuke, the Sox spend a little more than they otherwise would on Drew and it all evens out.
    It’s not hanky panky. It’s the Sox negotiating with an agent over two players for deals amenable to all four people — the Sox, Boras and his two clients. This is completely speculative, but we could see the Sox get a 4-year, $40M deal out of Matsuzaka and agree to 4 years, $56M for Drew with a fifth year automatically vested providing he averages 500 plate appearances over the life of the contract and reaches 500 PAs in Year 4, or something like that.

    Paul SF November 27, 2006, 11:50 pm
  • paul, stop trying to steal my ideas:)

    Brad November 27, 2006, 11:53 pm
  • …the hanky panky would be if as you suggested in your earlier posts, boras would throw the sox a bone on dm in order to get drew a better contract…i don’t know if it’s illegal, but it sure is unethical…a mere technicality that dm may not be in the union yet, since the union’s primary concern is to insure that all members rights are protected, along with driving up salaries…if they got a whiff that dm’s contract was manipulated to diminish his value, they might have a fit about what that would do to other free agent pitchers that are union members…having said that, my point is that boras probably has no interest in letting the sox have dm at $8m since he has already suggested [apparently] that dm should be valued at the level of an established major league pitcher, say $12-15m…the union would love that considering the pitchers still left out there…i’m just not sure why the sox would suddenly be so cost conscious and cheap out after making such a dramatically higher bid than any other bidder…are they getting cold feet?…

    dc November 27, 2006, 11:57 pm
  • dc, Because the Sox are still businessmen, and because this money will come out of payroll. To overpay on Matsuzaka himself means potentially not filling other holes on the roster. Just because John Henrry can pull $51.11M out of his wallet doesn’t mean Theo has the same flexibility — he’s still effectively capped at the new tax rate.

    Paul SF November 28, 2006, 12:06 am
  • dc, the Sox have not let us into any of the meetings as of yet, so the cold feet speculation only holds water on this site.

    Brad November 28, 2006, 12:11 am
  • …i just read an article by jim armstrong on AOL sports, and he suggested that the lions could agree to lower the bid obligation in order to help the sox make a deal with dm…i guess i was wrong about that not being appropriate [unless jim is wrong]…but it seems odd, why have a bidding process at all in that case?…no matter, i now think this will be a done deal soon…

    dc November 28, 2006, 8:25 am

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