Cardinals face problematic negotiation with Yadier Molina
The ordinary manner for golf equipment looking to expand a player coming into his unfastened-agent 12 months is to invite, “What could he be worth on the open market?”
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With the Cardinals’ Yadier Molina, it’s not pretty that simple. Molina, 34, is the pre-eminent catcher of his generation, a possible Hall of Famer, a four-time World Series participant, and -time champion. Preferably, Molina will retire a Cardinal. In the future, the group may erect a statue of him outdoor Busch Stadium. So, he could no longer be your general 35-yr-old, unfastened-agent catcher, the kind of participant who lately has been handled rudely at the open marketplace. The Cardinals are talking about an extension with Molina, as first stated by Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports activities. Molina’s agent, Melvin Roman, says, “Both facets are seeking to paintings difficult and see if we can make it show up.” But to complete a deal, Each facet should deliver.
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Molina needs to understand that his age works in opposition to him, even though (and possibly partly due to the fact) he played in a profession-excessive 147 games remaining season. He also wishes to apprehend that if he needs to stay a Cardinal, he in all likelihood will now not surpass Buster Posey’s $18.fifty six million average income, the best of any modern-day catcher. The Cardinals, meanwhile, need to recognize that Molina isn’t actually any other growing old veteran to whom they could bid farewell, the manner they did with Albert Pujols and Matt Holliday. Molina’s career accomplishments, excessive conditioning, and enduring importance to the crew’s pitching team of workers make him a unique case.
Really the Cardinals do recognize all of that. However, different elements will complicate the negotiation. Molina, who batted .307 with a .787 OPS closing season, is coming off his pleasant offensive overall performance given 2013, But his average shielding metrics are in decline. In some unspecified time in the future, the Cardinals will need to combine in catcher Carson Kelly, their top function prospect. Yet, the club might find it difficult to justify a reduction in Molina’s $15 million salaries.
So, back to the authentic question: What might Molina be worth on the open market?
Nicely, if Molina keeps ordinary production, all it would take is one group to decide that he can be their catching Svengali, assisting rework their pitching team of workers. He nearly actually could now not be like Holliday, commanding only a one-12 months deal. A two-yr extension would not be long enough; a 4-year extension through age 39 might be immoderate. The solution, then, is a 3-yr extension at improved profits, plus expertise — informal or in any other case — that the events will do everything possible to make sure that Molina spends his complete career in a Cardinals uniform.
History is the aspect of a deal; the Cardinals and Roman previously negotiated four- and 5-year contracts for Molina. This time, $50 million over three years sounds about right. The Cardinals, in a strict valuation, might view Molina as really worth much less than that. But in addition, they want to consider the cost of letting Molina break out lower back with team U.S., this time using a call for Mark Reed, the Diamondbacks’ bullpen catcher, assumed the identical function for crew U.S. within the 2013 International Baseball Classic almost by the twist of fate. But the experience proved so unforgettable; he volunteered for the process again.
“I guess I didn’t understand till I did it how much the players care about this component,” stated Reed, the younger brother of Angels minor league hitting coordinator and former main-league outfielder Jeremy Reed. “You comprehend just how important it’s miles.” Reed, 30, became a backup catcher at Triple-A in 2012 whilst the D’backs summoned him halfway thru the season to update longtime bullpen catcher Jeff Motuzas, who was experiencing elbow and knee issues.
The activity became presupposed to be best temporary; Reed re-signed with the D’backs as a participant that offseason and changed into camp the subsequent spring. However, team United States, whilst training in Arizona, realized it become short a bullpen catcher. Kevin Towers and Kirk Gibson, then the D’backs’ GM and supervisor, asked Reed if he might be fascinated.
Naturally, Reed spoke back yes, joining a staff that covered Joe Torre as a supervisor and Greg Maddux as pitching teach. Reed said his maximum indelible reminiscences from the WBC were of Torre’s first speech, stressing the significance of wearing America Jersey and the glum scene in the clubhouse after the team misplaced to the Dominican Republic 3-1, with a risk to advance to the championship spherical.
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“I recollect the locker room while we misplaced, how lifeless it became in there,” Reed said. “It absolutely meant something to each one of these men.” Reed again to the D’backs after team U.S.A. turned into eliminated, However little did he realize that his playing career turned into over. Motuzas, it turned out, became bodily unable to renew his function as a bullpen catcher, and Reed took over the process for accuracy.
Because the ’17 WBC approached, Reed contacted former D’backs bench train Alan Trammell, a member of Supervisor Jim Leyland’s team of workers, and requested approximately becoming a member of the crew United States of America workforce. “Funny which you texted me,” Trammell answered. “They introduced your name up already.” New D’backs GM Mike Hazen and manager Torey Lovullo gave their blessing, and Reed will represent the group at the side of the first baseman Paul Goldschmidt.