Frequent reader rghrbek posted a comment on yesterday’s Washburn post that I think is worth quoting and discussing in a new post:
I have this impending doomed feeling that the Twins will “get their man” and sign washburn right before spring training for 5 mil.
The twins could offer Lopez 10 mil over 2 years with a 5.5 mil option on the 3rd year, with a mil buyout. That is money well spent.
Bill Smith said that the reason the Washburn talks broke down was that Boras wants a multi-year deal, but — and this is important — the Twins feel they can’t commit any new money beyond 2010 in anticipation of the Mauer contract.
If that’s true, that would explain* why they’d consider themselves unable to offer such a contract to Felipe Lopez. If they can’t commit money beyond 2010, then they certainly can’t offer him a 2 year contract with an option for year 3.
* Which is to say that it would “explain it in such a way that it’s much more satisfying to me than the idea that the Twins don’t consider Lopez a viable 2B candidate for performance reasons.” Thought I should clarify that.
And if that’s really the case, it’s a disaster. Do they think Mauer isn’t tapped into the news surrounding his contract negotiatons? Mauer’s repeatedly said he wants to be in position to win, and he doesn’t want to sign a long contract with a team that’s not going to build a championship-caliber team around him. This offseason, I’d thought it looked like the Twins were doing everything they could in 2010 to show Mauer that they’re committed to winning.
But if they start sending signals that if they have Mauer’s big contract on the books then they can’t spend any money, all that work is thrown out the window. If Mauer even thinks the Twins aren’t willing to pull out all the stops to win a championship, it just got a whole lot more difficult to sign him. He won’t have such reservations about the Yankees and Red Sox, which will work in concert with their presumably much larger contract offers to convince him to leave the Twins.
I see this as another reason to try to get Lopez on a contract like the one proposed by rghrbek, beyond the simple fact that it’d be a good deal for both sides in a vacuum. I’m not at all confident in the Twins’ front office, though.8 comments