Clubs are well aware of the “risk” of signing a big, long-term contract, but can’t resist the lure of a top-tier free agent. Finding a player on the injured list (IL) shortly after signing, or even years later, has become a regular occurrence since the introduction of free agency in 1976.바카라사이트
This past winter, the free agency market set a record for the largest signings in history. The total value of the 171 players who signed contracts was a whopping $3.7 billion. Nine contracts totaled more than $100 million. However, all nine have been plagued by injuries and underperformance this season. Five of the nine are on or have been on the IL.
It’s very unusual for players with megaton contracts to have such a collective failure in their first season.
New York Yankees home run king Aaron Judge (9 years, $360 million) is the prime example. He injured his right big toe in the bottom of the eighth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium on 4 June when he caught a tricky fly by J.D. Martinez and crashed into the fence. I thought I was going to be out for 10 days, but upon further examination, I was diagnosed with a torn ligament. After a combination of treatment and rest, Jersey recently started playing catch. He could return in early August at the earliest.
Before his injury, Judge was in peak form, batting .291 with 19 home runs, 40 RBIs and a 1.078 OPS in 49 games. Without him, the Yankees went 14-17.▶The Texas Rangers’ ace, Jacob deGrom (five years, $185 million), is out for the season. DeGrom was a concern in his season opener, giving up five runs on six hits in 3⅔ innings. He settled down and lowered his ERA to the low 2s, but on 29 April against the Yankees, he left the game in the fourth inning with elbow tightness and was placed on the disabled list the next day. In six games, he went 2-0 with a 2.67 ERA and 45 strikeouts.
DeGrom underwent Tommy John surgery on 12 June. He said after the surgery, “The surgery went well. I look forward to doing everything I can to rehab,” he said after the surgery, adding, “I’ll be back next August.” His former team, the New York Mets, perhaps anticipating this, did not re-sign DeGrom last winter.
However, the Mets did lose closer Edwin Diaz (five years, $120 million). He re-signed for the most money ever for a bullpen arm, but was placed on the IL before the season even started. He was injured at the World Baseball Classic. Playing for Puerto Rico, Diaz suffered a torn tendon in his right knee during a ceremony after the team defeated the Dominican Republic to advance to the quarterfinals.
Instead, the Mets were pleased to re-sign outfielder Brandon Nimmo (eight years, $162 million). In 88 games in the first half, Nimmo is batting .266 (342-for-91) with 13 home runs, 41 RBIs and an OPS of .807. The second half is a concern, however, as his monthly batting average has gone from 0.330 to 0.267 to 0.255 to 0.100.
Carlos Rodon made his Yankees debut against the Chicago Cubs on Aug. 8 after spending four months on the disabled list with an arm injury. AP
The Yankees struggled for the first half of the season with Carlos Rodon (six years, $162 million), whom they acquired not for his jersey but for his left-handed ace. He injured his left arm late in spring training. It was said he would return, but he didn’t, and after three minor league rehab starts, he finally returned on the 8th and took the loss against the Chicago Cubs, giving up two runs on four hits in 5⅓ innings. It was a relatively strong outing, so the Yankees will be hoping for a better second half.
Cubs shortstop Dansby Swanson (7 years, $177 million) had a relatively healthy first half before going on the DL on the 7th with a left heel contusion. In 83 games, he’s batting .258 (84-for-325) with 10 homers, 36 RBIs and a .753 OPS.▶Carlos Correa (six years, $200 million), whose past ankle injuries derailed big-money deals with the San Francisco Giants and Mets last winter and ultimately kept him with the Minnesota Twins, has been in silent mode through the first half. In 80 games, he hit just .225 (69-for-307) with 11 homers, 38 RBIs, and a .700 OPS. He didn’t go on the IL, but missed 11 games due to various injuries.
San Diego Padres Xander Bogaerts (11 years, $280 million) hasn’t had any major injuries, but he’s underperformed expectations with a .253 average (80-for-316), 10 homers, 35 RBIs, and a .731 OPS, especially since he slumped back to a .200 average in July.
Same goes for Trea Turner (11 years, $300 million) of the Philadelphia Phillies, who made the much-anticipated move to the East Coast. Despite no major injuries, he hit just .247 (91-for-368) with 10 homers, 32 RBIs, and an OPS of .687 in 88 games. An OPS+ of 88 and a bWAR of 1.1 don’t look good at all.
Still, the reason the free agent market heats up every year is because there’s a certain amount of success involved. That’s hard to deny, whether it’s on the field or at the box office.
Recent success stories among free agents include Gerrit Cole of the Yankees (9 years, $324 million), Freddie Freeman of the Los Angeles Dodgers (6 years, $162 million), Corey Seager of the Texas Rangers (10 years, $325 million), and Bryce Harper of the Philadelphia Phillies (13 years, $330 million).