I had the chance to ask a veteran baseball guy — not a team employee, but someone with decades of experience in different facets of the game — about the Vernon Wells trade on Monday. Specifically, is there such a thing as an “unmovable contract” if Wells gets traded twice after signing a seven-year, $126 million deal?
“The economics of the game have changed so much in the last one, two seasons,” he said, “between cable revenue and MLB revenue sharing, unmovable contracts are looking movable to teams that have money.”
Keep that in mind in 2014, when Albert Pujols‘ salary jumps to $23 million, and gradually escalates before expiring in 2021. Or in 2015, when Josh Hamilton‘s salary jumps to $25.4 million, or 2016 when Hamilton becomes a $32.4 million man.
Who knows where the economics of the game will be then, but don’t call either contract unmovable.
Someone suggested this morning that the two players the Angels acquired for Vernon Wells on Tuesday, Exicardo Cayones and Kramer Sneed, would be good title characters in a Buddy Comedy. Look out Harold and Kumar…here come Exicardo and Kramer!
Vernon Wells has passed his physical and Major League Baseball has signed off on a trade sending the outfielder to the New York Yankees.
The Angels received Exicardo Cayones and Kramer Sneed from the Yankees. Cayones, a 21-year-old outfielder, finished last season in the Yankees’ Low-A affiliate in the New York Penn League. Sneed, a 24-year-old pitcher, went 0-7 with a 5.37 ERA with the Yankees’ affiliate in the High-A Florida State League in 2012.
The Yankees will also send approximately $13 million to Anaheim over the next two years to offset some of Wells’ salary.
Wells, who cost the Angels Mike Napoli and Juan Rivera in a January 2011 trade with the Blue Jays, was a major disappointment on the field during his two seasons in Anaheim.
In 2011, one year removed from his third career all-star appearance, Wells batted .218 with a .248 on-base percentage and .412 slugging percentage. His batting average was the lowest among qualifying American League players.
In 2012, Wells was relegated to the bench when Mike Trout emerged as the Angels’ everyday center fielder and eventual American League rookie of the year. Wells played only 77 games, batting .230/.279/.403.
Meanwhile, he continued to earn the team’s highest salary as a result of the seven-year, $126 million contract he signed with Toronto in 2008.
Now that Wells is gone, here’s your chance to chime in: