Over at ESPN.com (Insider only) today Keith Law finally unveiled a project that was first suggested on a Bill Simmons podcast back in September: his list of the 50 best MLB players who’ve yet to play their age 25 season.

The “MLB” in the title is rather intentional, as he only included players who have burned their Rookie of the Year eligibility, meaning that the likes of Bryce Harper and Matt Moore, who would surely otherwise be, aren’t on the list.

Much of the Jays’ prospect wealth is still outside the Majors, so they’re not terribly well-represented here, but they most certainly are– notably so by Brett Lawrie, who Law ranks tenth. When I saw it I wondered if some ultra-homer Jays fans might turn up their noses at the ranking, but I certainly hope not– he slots in just behind Stephen Strasburg and Madison Bumgarner, ahead of Mike Trout and Jason Heyward. Newsflash: that’s slightly fucking good.

The D’backs’ Justin Upton tops the list, with Andrew McCutchen, Mike Stanton, Buster Posey, Clayton Kershaw, Starlin Castro, and Eric Hosmer also appearing in the top ten. Colby Rasmus ranks 43rd, between Jeremy Hellickson and Danny Espinosa, while– I shit you not– Travis Snider gets an honourable mention.

Here are the Jays-related tidbits from the piece, and the follow-up KLaw Chat that took place this afternoon and featured several readers confused about the age cut-off (born on or before July 1, 1986). FYI, there’s some non-50 Under 25 content in there. Tyler Beede-related tidbit alert!

Brett Lawrie (10): “He may not hit like he did in 2011 for a full season (.953 OPS in 171 PAs), but his first taste of the majors was pretty impressive for a 21-year-old coming off a hand injury and jumping into baseball’s toughest division,” Law writes. “Lawrie had a big off-season before 2011, changing organizations and agents, and concerns about his coachability disappeared. With Toronto, he showed he can murder a fastball, added value on the bases (he’s a plus runner despite his muscular build), and played a surprisingly strong third base. He’s going to see a lot more off-speed stuff in 2012, and will have to improve his recognition of and/or ability to hit those pitches. But the ceiling here just keeps going up, and a peak with a .400 OBP, 30-plus homers, and 20-plus steals is within reach, with above-average or better defense at third.”

Colby Rasmus (43): “Freed from a situation in St. Louis he’s acknowledged was hurting his on-field production, Rasmus was traded to Toronto, got hurt, and didn’t exactly produce when he was healthy (.517 OPS in 140 PAs with the Jays),” Law explains. “He has a good eye and a short, simple swing with good leverage to produce power, but his lower half became very busy in 2012, and he struggled getting his front leg down for proper timing. Toronto can afford to be patient, and an athletic outfielder with his kind of plate discipline is rare enough that they were smart to pounce on him when he fell out of favor with the Cardinals.”

From the Chat…

Bret (Toronto)
Really, really enjoyed your Top 50 Under 25 piece, and was happy to see Travis Snider get an honorable mention. Would it be a no-brainer to you to give Snider the full-time LF job over Eric Thames in Toronto?
Klaw
He’s just too young to give up on, but not only has the major league performance been bad, he’s looked bad doing it. Given how elite he was as a prospect, I wanted to put him on the list, even at the bottom, just to say “there’s still a chance” … but rationally I couldn’t do it. Yes, I’d play him over Thames. Thames has a part-timer ceiling.

Aaron (Oregon)
Do you believe in this whole fresh start playing for a different team idea?
Klaw
I think it exists, yes. It’s player to player, and I would like to at least be able to identify the reason an environment didn’t work for a player before touting the “hey, change of scenery!” argument in favor of a trade. We know why Rasmus was no longer a fit in St. Louis, for example.

Gruber’s Mullet (Toronto)
Brett Lawrie at #10. How much of an impact did this high ranking have with his play when he got called up to the majors?
Klaw
If you’re asking whether he’s at 10 because he hit so well in the big leagues, the answer is largely no. It’s based on tools and potential, and the very real improvement in his defense between March and October.

Doug (Phoenix)
I could be crazy, but given that he’s coming off a down-year after two very good ones and the perception of Petco, is there a chance that Heath Bell ends up getting undervalued and signing a pretty reasonable deal?
Klaw
Not just a down year in stats, but down year in velocity too. That’s a real concern.

Derrick (Toronto)
Is Tyler Beede kicking himself at this moment?
Klaw
No. He and the Jays disagreed on the health of his shoulder. It wasn’t strictly about money.

Jonathan (GTA)
Do you think the Blue Jays should move Brett Lawrie back to second base?
Klaw
No, given the progress he’s made at third, I wouldn’t mess with it.

David H (Chi)
I don’t have insider, can I assume Castro was on your list. If so, where?
Klaw
Get Insider. It’s half off right now at $19.95 for a year: http://klaw.me/vUniWh

Comments (69)

  1. Promoting ESPN Insider at the end there?

    Why would I ever buy that insider when I can just read all the Jays related stuff here.

  2. not that i’m in favor of a heath bell signing. but his fastball velocity is the same as ever (~94mph) according to fangraphs, so i’m not sure where he’s getting his numbers.

  3. Actually, I was looking at that the other day, and I think that’s correct. Hmmm. Not sure. He might have mistaken his slipping command for slipping velocity?

  4. Can we all stop drooling over Thames already? Hes basically a slow Corey Patterson.

  5. Feel free to compare him to someone who is not also black, if you like.

  6. It’s been mentioned a few times since the pre-July trade deadline having to do with his trade value.

  7. well thats the other thing, bell’s BB/9 and BB% is right in line with his career averages. i guess law’s using some other measure or his eyes.

  8. They’re both all or nothing hitters who rarely take a walk, have a bit of power, and can’t field at all. I’d think of a white guy to compare him to but the white guys just seem to be too scrappy and not athletic enough to make a good comparison.

  9. White guys are scrappy, black guys are athletic, got it.

  10. Except he’s not a centerfielder, has a much lower overall ceiling, plays terrible defense. and projects to be a decent hitter with power. He’s nothing really like him at all.

  11. obvious level.

  12. Exactly.

  13. Corey Patterson was a great defensive CF. There’s a reason he’s been hanging around in the league for so long despite never fulfilling his enormous potential. And it’s not because he can hit.

  14. Thames jumps over a mosh pit. Lawrie kills everyone in it.

  15. 1. Are you saying that Patterson can actually play centre? Just because a manager plays him there does not mean he can actually do well there. He has also shown that he can’t play left or right either.

    2. I haven’t seen a single scouting report saying that Thames will be anything more than a 4th outfielder or decent bat off of the bench. Which is basically what Patterson is.

  16. This is the first I have heard of shoulder issues with Beede. Has that been mentioned before? If so, why was it an issue if as reported the Jays were offering approx. 3M?

  17. 1. Yes, Corey Patterson can play center. He’s been doing it his entire career and been very successful at it. He’s certainly not at the elite level he once played at, but his range is still pretty good.

    2. If Eric Thames stays in the majors, it’s going to be for a completely different reason than Patterson (offense, not defense). A far better comparison would have been Eric Hinske, but, of course, he’s not black.

  18. Too scrappy

  19. LOL

  20. 1. I don’t remember ANYONE being even remotely comfortable when Patterson was put in the outfield. His defense is on par with Rajai Davis or maybe slightly better.

    2. If I remember correctly Hinske was a pretty good defender back in the day with the jays. I don’t see Hinske as much of a bat at all. Honestly I don’t even know why he has lasted almost a decade in the big leagues.

  21. White guys have names like Lenny, while black guys have names like Carl

  22. Ah you stole my line.  damn you.

  23. Law on Rasmus: “He has a good eye and a short, simple swing”

    I thought his swing looked a touch long actually.  He seemed to have some trouble with elevated fastballs.

  24. If BFF argues with you and says you’re wrong that means you made a valid point right?

  25. Yea I thought his swing was really long… 

  26. I wouldn’t mind if Thames became what David Murphy has been for the Rangers the last 4 seasons. A left handed OF that has picked up like 460 PA each season and has very consistent, solid stats. I’m not sure if he’s ever even been the starter if not for an injury, but as a 4th OF he’s been very valuable to the Rangers making the league minimum and then 2.4m in arb1. I like Thames’ vibe though so who knows, maybe I’m underselling his potential.

  27. @88385aa373280bcec911343b6606f676:disqus  Have you guys SEEN Rasmus swing a bat? Where did you get this idea that his swing is “long” – nothing about it is long. He has a fucking awesome swing. That doesn’t mean he wasn’t ‘off’ or longer than normal – but his swing itself – the swing that has brought him to where he is, is close to what you would ask almost any kid to try and do.
    check this shit out:
    http://www.chrisoleary.com/pro

  28. His swing appears long because his follow through is slow and exaggerated, but the follow through means virtually nothing.  He’s very quick and powerful through the zone.

  29. The hand wringing over 2nd base and the left fielders is getting tiresome. Everyone should be screaming for a #2 pitcher. It will solidify the rotation, knock a starter back to the pen and help keep wear and tear on the pen down. It takes pressure off the offense to produce too.

    #2 Starter!

  30. Yeah, exactly.  And there are two young, suitable options for LF anyway.  If LF is a problem for this season, then catcher is too.  

  31. Hinske was a pretty crappy third baseman, otherwise his time as a starter would’ve lasted much longer.  He’s had a few ~.800 OPS seasons (albeit some in limited playing time), but because he couldn’t stick at third, he’s been a part-time corner guy/bench player.  EE is actually is a pretty good comparable to him.

  32. I’ll tell you what everyone should be screaming for: Mike McCoy at second base.  He can bat #2 in the order and set the table for the number three guy, who if Farrell had any brains, would be Chris Woodward.

    Brian Tallet can be the #2 starter, no problem there.

    Lastly, the Jays should throw A LOT of money at a bunch of relievers.  Now that Nathan and Papelbon are off the market, I’d set my sights on Heath Bell.  He’s a veteran and he’s been around.  Forget throwing money at foreign youngsters like Darvish and that Cuban Ces-what’s his name.  This team needs a veteran guy at the back of the pen to lock down Tallet’s wins.

  33. elite bats like Fielder nearly never hit free agency. josh hamilton has spent so much time on the DL and is older than him…

    the more i look at guys comprable to Fielder in age and ability when they hit free agency, the more the picture emerges that signing him is a very good idea, regardless of the cost.

    not signing him signals to me that this team really has no interest in winning, or at least that interest is completely second to making money. obviously they can still do both, but if cheese-eating fans are willing to pretend they can win without fielder, well, that’s $25 million a year they can save to fall short of the playoffs, right?

    oh, and i’m sick of the corporate slaves at the fan590 and their lines about “he’s not going to come here”…please. if fielder cared about staying with the team he came up with, he would have accepted the 5/100 offer they made him long ago. he wants money. rogers has it, and if they don’t pony up – we can start accepting the fact that rogers is just like MLSE and ballard and the make-me-laughs. all the money in the world, but no respect for the fans that pay their hard-earned money.

    “won’t come here” is just code for “rogers is too cheap to pay the going rate for” – it has nothing to do with players. and if it does, then those specific players deserve to be outed for the john rocker prejudicial fools they are. toronto might be a dismal place right now, but come june, it’s got as good weather as anywhere else…better, even.

    give us fielder!

  34. Now Fielder is pretty good, tho a bit on the young side.  If the Jays want to get some veteran presence down there at first they can probably do better.

  35. Agreed! Been sayin that for a while now Brent.

  36. MLBTraderumors: Marlins sign Bell…3 years 29 million

  37. Deep exhale for some of us. Justification for a full on conniption fit for others, and a shrug of the shoulders for the rest.

  38. Haha marlins signed Bell for 3 yrs 29M. Can’t blame the Jays for not doing that. Now if only they’d put that bell money towards fielder.

  39. 27M not 29M. Average of $9 M. I wouldn’t have given him more than 2 yrs 10M

  40. Thank fuck.

    We were stupid to doubt AA.

  41. If you’re suggesting that Corey Patterson and Eric Thames are similar players, then no, you have not made a valid point.

  42. You remember wrong. Hinske was not a good defender at any position….especially 3B.

  43. Very good news…now they just need to use some of the money they were using to bid on Papelbon and Bell on actual valuable players.

  44. Well I’m sure now we’ll get the articles tomorrow from like Damien Cox or whoever about how the the Jays missed out and they should have beaten Florida’s offer.

  45. Nice rant.Totally off base. But I love the passion.

    You’re gonna have one hell of a hangover tommorow.

    There are so many factors to a winning ball team that one player won’t put you over the top.

    Remember before 2011 started.
    The Bosox were the best team constructed in the history of baseball.
    The Phillies were a lock for a WS berth. The pitching would make up for any faults they might have.
    Snider would rake if he had job security. Unless he was still shitting the bed after 2 months.
    BTW: remember when Snider was the Jays ONLY prospect.
    Why trade your #1 pitcher for a Canadian punk kid with a bad attitude,a catcher who was converted to play second and did so very poorly.
    If the Jays could only find a CF like Rasmus,cause the Cards would never trade that kid.
    Bautista will regress, the question is by how much?
    If Lacava was offered a GM position he’d be crazy not to take it.

    Remember how 2011 ended?

    As much as you’d like Rogers and AA to blow their load now.I think he’s gonna make it last so he gets a full feeling of satisfaction.

    As much as you want this, there are many,many people advising AA who are helping him acheive the ultimate goal.It’s their goal too.

  46. Oops I mean Miami’s offer.

  47. ps their logo is so stupid

  48. Honestly I remember shitting bricks every time the ball went to Corey last season. I’m sure you watched the games last year, were you confident whenever the ball was hit Corey’s way that w/o a doubt he was going to catch it? I remember a lot of people on Jays blogs, myself included were taking a dump on his terrible fielding. 

  49. Indeed. As sad as it is to consider, Patterson was once a superstud prospect. 

  50. This is the first I have heard of shoulder issues with Beede. Has that been mentioned before? If so, why was it an issue if as reported the Jays were offering approx. 3M

    It’s first mention was by Law last week on Twitter, but he didn’t tweet it, he said it in response to a tweet he got from someone who asked him and then replied the shoulder info.

  51. Eric Thames is a far, far worse defender. He can’t even play LF adequately. He has no range and a bad arm.

    Corey Patterson may have regressed with age, but he used to be a fantastic CF defensively. And he can still fill in the position at times.

  52. signing fielder isn’t about 2012. it’s about 2012-2016 and maybe even beyond. i think he could be good beyond that. manny was certainly good for 7 or 8 years and it’s not like he was a brett lawrie type in the physique department.

    does signing fielder make the team better indefinitely? if the answer is ‘no’ – that means that rogers can’t afford to carry any 20+ million dollars contracts, and the only person on the team atm that even appears in a position to EVER earn one is brett lawrie, and he has 171 plate appearences, and that won’t happen until what will probably be the last year of fielder’s deal.

    fielder doesn’t represent the jays ‘load’ – if that’s the case, they should give up now. signing him isn’t a ‘win now’ strategy. it’s a win indefinitely strategy. i understand the rationale behind building, and i’m okay with the pacing, but if you look at the free agent landscape from now to the next 2 years, there isn’t anyone else you want to over pay – at least in my books. matt kemp would have been worth paying – but he’s off the market now. tim lincecum? maybe, but he’ll be over 30 by the time he’s on the market.

    ultimately, everyone in the world has an immediate priority: feed and shelter myself and their family. so acting as if making the blue jays the best team it can be trumps staying employed and making the bosses happy with the margins doesn’t make sense

    aa can compare the jays to the rangers if he wants, but the truth of the matter is the al east and west are two totally different rodeos.

  53. I think Snider needs to go see a sports psychologist.   He certainly has more talent than Thames, but for some reason cannot put it to use for more than about 50 PA at a time.   Any time he seems to get a handle on the mental aspects of the game, he goes and hurts himself.   Any time he has a long stretch of good health, he descends into massive slumps and ends up getting himself demoted.

    Thames, has his shortcomings — cannot play defense, strikes out too much.  But he did something that Snider has never done — hang around long enough to get 400 PA in a single MLB season.

    Snider can field and run, and when the stars are aligned perfectly he’s a hell of a hitter.  I just wish was able to do it on a consistent basis. 

  54. Excellent points.
    And for the record I’m not adverse to signing Fielder or spending Rogers money on FA.

    But your statement
    “not signing him signals to me that this team really has no interest in winning”

    I think they do care and it is probably bottom line related.Though not the Jays bottom line as much as the other properties under the Rogers corp.

    Signing Fielder is more about image and public perception than winning a penant in 2012.IMHO the Jays have more pressing issues to be resolved before they can be considered a threat in the ALE.

    SP,2nd,LF,bullpen,manager are things that need to be addressed more than 1st base.Until they are addressed, spending 22.5 mil per year  on a great player may be a waste.

    People complain about wasting Bautista’s prime years won’t be happy about wasting Bautista’s AND Fielder’s prime years.

    I read somewhere,that NY and Bos ability to write off and absorb bad contracts was one of the keys to them taking chances and go forward every year. Rogers has done the same, but just like NY and Bos,they want to keep that practice to a minimum.

  55. He has and does.I don’t have the link from a couple of years ago but in a nutshell,Snider has had anger management issues along with personal issues stemming from childhood.He has matured quite a bit which allows him to weather the ups and downs better.He has the tools physically hopefully he can rebound mentally.

  56. How is Mr. “Sprint around the bases after taters” Thames not scrappy? He is pure scrappy.

  57. In the AL East, what we really need is a #1B starter. Ideally, that would be Romero…

  58. I still love you Cito. I always will. Now go away please.

  59. Well he may have been good long ago, but left much to be desired the past season. I agree Thames is a worse defender though. Honestly they’re both very bad, it was like picking your poison in the OF basically. Hopefully Thames is working on his D

  60. The Jays system is chock full of prospects…but they’re all at AA or lower, and none have the hype that’s going to allow them to flip one into a perennial all star @ SP, or LF…in my view (ie. being on the opposite end of the marcum/lawrie deal), they’re better letting the system grow another year. The arms will come, and I’m not sure trading multiple high upside arms for someone like one of the braves AAA aces is such a great idea. it seems like that;s a bigger risk than paying fielder.

    now that AA has, through the new cba, lost the ability to overspend on amateur talent, the system is going to continue to deteriorate. maybe some of these guys become stars, and it appears that the system is getting ‘better’ but in terms of depth – it’s extremely unlikely that the sheer number of high potential guys will ever be this high. it’s just going to deplete through graduation to MLB and trades, as AA gives away the kitchen sink in prospects to bring in a power bat like fielder, instead of just ponying up the dough that he now CANNOT spend in the draft and ifa markets.

    spending fielder isn’t a waste because it isn’t a “win now” move. signing pujols would be. but fielder is 27. if he signs an 8 year deal, he’ll only be 35 when the contract expires! no one is saying that the jays are stupid for signing bautista through age 35.

  61. Can we please see the new CBA in action before we assume that the system is going to continue to deteriorate due to the new de facto slotting system when it comes to the draft and IFAs for that matter? I felt that way too when it was first signed, and then I got over it. AA and Co. found the holes in the previous one, and I think they can do it again. They’ll probably be allotted a tidy sum for draft bonuses next year with all the picks they’ll have in the first two rounds. That sum is based on each slot recommendation for every pick you have. He hasn’t lost the ability to spend on the draft, just to overspend. Let’s see how it goes before we eliminate drafting and development as a viable strategy under the new CBA.

  62. Scouting will still be valuable – if you believe that individual scouts have insight past consensus…

    the jays will be a middling team, getting middle of first round picks taht could be shelby miller, or could be joe blow.

    they have a set cap on money, so in IFA you can go quality or you can go quantity.

    if you can think of another way that they can flood their system with talent they way they have in the past 2 years – let me know.

    until then, it is pretty safe to assume, as people smarter and closer to the document than me have said, that the jays are going to be hurt by this. fortunately…they are loaded, and can just “game the system” in the way of those trailblazing yankees as documented in the film “too much moneyball”

  63. How about Non Drafted Free Agents? What if players who would normally drop to the later rounds start falling right through the draft and circumvent the draft to get their big payday? I’m totally spitballing here because I have no clue whether that’s a possible loophole or not, but if it is, look for Boras to exploit it as much as he would any other.

  64. the only loophole i can fathom is that players basically send out letters saying: this is my bonus demand, so if you sign me before the 10th round and aren’t prepared to meet it, i’ll be going to college/sr year.
    So basically, i guess there will be lots of talent getting picked in the 10th round or later…unless there are bonus slots there as well, i haven’t read the cba.

  65. After the 10th round any bonus that exceeds $100,000 gets dumped into the luxury tax overage, so they’re not likely to get paid large in those spots. Fortunately, the slots are a lot higher than the silly recommendations in previous years.

    I’m sure there are ways to make it work and AA and Co. will find them. Then the league will clamp down, then AA will adjust and so on and so on. Kinda like baseball players needing to learn to make adjustments if they want to stay remain viable big leaguers.

    I’m not as pissed off by the CBA as I was when it came out. Still think it’s ridiculous, but 1) if they want to find a way to get players drafted in the order they “should be”, and 2) it results in that happening with most of them signing, and 3) the defections to other sports and college don’t kill the talent pool too much – more power to them and baseball will have better amateur talent distribution than before. That’s a lot of ifs ands and buts though. I’m prepared to see how the next draft goes before I rashly conclude that the draft is no longer a viable option for amateur talent acquisition.

  66. That should be “remain viable big leaguers” rather than “stay remain viable big leaguers”.

  67. to me, the cba’s obvious lesson is: the MLBPA went out and got what big leaguers wanted: more money for those that have made it, paid their dues, and less to be doled out to kids who have never worked a job or lived outside their parents house.

    that’s their right…it means that free agents will make more.

    right now, the jays should JUMP to sign fielder. he’s an elite bat and 27. that type of player almost never hits the market. you don’t have to give up assets you already have, only money.

    it might be a different situation if their payroll was over-extended, but it isn’t.

    i’ve been looking at historically bad contracts, and almost all of the multi-year deals that look bad are the ones that teams give to players 30 or over. almost all of them are inflated contracts given to star players, but not elite ones.

    The worst FAs i can think of that were under 30 when signed are Zito and Hampton. Both pitchers. Zito’s K/9 had been falling like snow in february, and almost every stat showed that he was not the same guy as his first 2 years in the league. he was already toast when he hit the market.

    if you can show me any convincing evidence as to why fielder is going to decline in the next 5 years, i’d like to see it. i mean, i’m not trolling – i just don’t understand how the jays cannot have already sent him his jerseys and put his name on a locker.

    fielder should just make a demand and they should go…”ok (blue jays)”. done. don’t play hardball this time. it’s the right thing to do. i’ll happily eat my words in 8 years if i’m wrong.

  68. Tell me what the maximum years and dollars you would be comfortable with is if you ran the show/had to report to the shareholders. In a shallow market (which he might be facing), I think 5 years for $140 million (Say 5/$110 mil plus a $30 mil bonus paid out in five $6 mil bonuses) might be able to get it done. That stays within the 5 year term that Beeston seems to want to hold contracts to, but the tradeoff is that you allow Prince to set the all-time record for AAV (pending what happens with Pujols – I think A-Rod currently has it at $27.5 mil per).

    Play around with bonuses if you need to in order to make the payroll more palatable for the corporation or the team. Most of the big contracts these days do it, so it’s not like you’d be setting a precedent or anything. Prince also gets to shoot for another big payday after 2016 if he stays healthy.

    I’m sure Prince wants as many guaranteed years as possible though so that might not be enough. What’s your offer?

  69. Ryan Campbell made some predictions on Fielder’s value.
    http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs
    Basically he’s saying, if Fielder’s decline is close to other “big” players, and if his “true” abilit is something like 4.5 wins, and his peak has already passed (as suggested by the data on big guys…but that sample is very small and skewed by outliers)…even then, in the MOST pessimistic scenario with wins costed at $5m now with inflation…fielder is still going to produced $120/7years…about $17M/year.

    I’m more optimistic, so I will stick with the 7 years as being necessary.

    I think 7/150 is a good offer which has a good chance of more than recouping the value, but i think 8/168 or $21M/yr is closer to what it will take to sign him. I can easily see 8 years and 22million per. moreover, i’d be okay with that contract.

    Beyond that, and I’d be surprised, the market isn’t as strong and Miami is rumoured to prefer Pujols and not really be interested in Fielder. It really looks like only the Cubs and Jays are in any position to make serious offers on Fielder, but who knows? Lots of teams might want him as a straight DH.

    CC Sabbathia has yet to break down, and his job is considerably more strenuous than playing DH and running the bases, imo.

    i do, however, agree with you that the more they can play around with the pay schedule and bonus/options, the better. i also think the 5year deal might be advisable to him, then he will re-enter the market at the age Pujols is now, probably as definitely a dh-only guy, but with the chance for another big contract.

    he’s already turned down 6/120 (reportedly) from the brew crew, so i’m not sure what he wants, but i imagine for him to accept less years it would have to be in the 5/140 neighbourhood you suggest, but i actually think he has a good chance of producing into his mid-30s which is why i’m okay with a longer deal.

    i think he’ll remain a 3-win guy for at least 6 years. power is rare these days, there are probably fewer than 20 guys in the whole league with 40HR power now off the top of my head…and he’s almost a lock for 35 (if healthy)

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