Ken Rosenthal is confirming Ignacio Serrano’s report that Victor Martinez, who will turn 32 next month, has agreed to a four year contract worth $50 million with the Detroit Tigers, pending a physical.
Martinez has been the very model of a modern major (field) general at the catcher position for long stretches of the last seven years. While there’s little to suggest that this is going to change in the immediate future (he still played 102 games at catcher for the Red Sox this past season), it’s expected that V-Mart will begin taking more and more at bats as the Tigers’ designated hitter as the four year contract goes on.
Martinez’s stellar numbers while playing catcher (4.0 WAR last season) suddenly begin to look rather ordinary as a DH, and verging at almost atrocious as a $12.5 million a year DH. For my fellow Ontarians, it’s a bit like the hottest chick in Timmins moving to Toronto, while being funded by believers in her beauty.
The signing seems to match the gross amount of dollars that Dave Dombrowsky already wasted on the Tigers’ three year $16.5 million deal for right-handed reliever Joaquin Benoit.
In case anyone was still wondering, it appears that the Tigers will be “going for it” this coming season, because God knows they’re not going to be in a position to do so in 2013.
In all seriousness, I think that the Boston Red Sox get the most out of this deal. If you’ll recall, Boston originally traded Justin Masterson, Nick Hagadone and Bryan Price to Cleveland for Martinez. Essentially, the Red Sox now receive the Tigers’ first round, 19th overall pick, in addition to a supplemental round pick, for their three prospects and a year and a half of Martinez. Not a bad exchange at all.