Wednesday, November 19, 2014

The Miami Marlins will never actually pay Giancarlo Stanton $325 million

Notice the typical Marlins Park crowd in the background.
The Miami Marlins are a cheap small-market baseball team.  Twice they won the World Series (as the Florida Marlins in 1997 and 2003), and each time they disassembled the team immediately afterwards with an enormous payroll-cutting fire sale.

After hoodwinking the city of Miami into building them a new publicly-funded $600 million stadium, the Marlins made a sneaky PR move to justify it--they signed big-name free agents Jose Reyes and Mark Buehrle before the park's opening in 2012.

The club appeared to be spending serious money in an attempt to build a contender.  Reyes' contract was for six years/$106 million, while Buehrle's contract totaled 4 years/$58 million.  However, the yearly breakdowns were as follows:

Reyes: $10 mil in 2012 and 2013, $16 mil in 2014, and $22 mil per year for 2015-2017 with a club option for another $22 mil in 2018 (or a $4 mil buyout instead).

Buehrle: $4 mil signing bonus followed by $6 mil in 2012, $11 mil in 2013, $18 mil in 2014 and $19 mil in 2015.

The Marlins traded away both Reyes and Buehrle after just one season in the franchise's third major dismantling of the team in 15 years.  Miami ended up paying only $20 million of the $164 million owed to Reyes and Buehrle.

Well guess what, the 13-year, $325-million richest-in-MLB-history contract that Giancarlo Stanton just inked with the Marlins breaks down like this:

2015: $6.5 mil
2016: $9 mil
2017: $14.5 mil
2018-2027: Between $25 mil and $32 mil per season

Stanton may be traded after one year, or possibly after two.  But there's a 100 percent chance he'll be out of Miami after three seasons before this deal actually gets expensive for the Marlins.

The contract is a joke and MLB should have voided it before it happened.


  1. I'd heard about Stanton's $$$ breakdown -- didn't know all those details for JR and MB.

    But I also thought the team gave him a no-trade clause -- along with expressing a cynicism similar to yours here (apparently the team can be sold in two years), Dan LeBatard found the no-trade aspect quite out-of-the-norm.

    1. Yes, he does have a no-trade clause. But, why wouldn't he eagerly approve a trade to a contender when this team still stinks and hasn't spent any other money in a year or two? Him getting sick of being there would have to be a part of it, and I think that's a likely scenario.


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