RSS Twitter Facebook YouTube
Expand Menu

MLB Storylines: Braves continue to lock up young core

MLB Storylines: Braves continue to lock up young core
Craig Kimbrel has 138 saves over the last three seasons and has a career 1.39 ERA. (Photo: AP)
February 17, 2014
Share via: Share: Facebook Share: Twitter Share: Google Share: Pinterest Share: Print Share: Email

In this MLB News and Notes segment, I will be giving occasional reports on the latest news and rumors throughout the MLB. I also will try to tweet news and rumors as I see them, so feel free to follow me on Twitter: @ajnicholsIBI.

Here are the stories from Sunday, February 16th.

Top Stories

  • The Braves agreed to a four-year, $42 million extension with star closer Craig Kimbrel. The deal also includes a $13 million option for a fifth year. Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reported the full breakdown of the deal: $1 million signing bonus, $7 million in 2014, $9 million in 2015, $11 million in 2016, $13 million in 2017, $13 million option for 2018 with $1 million buyout.
  • Red Sox pitcher Ryan Dempster will not pitch in 2014 due to physical reasons and a desire to spend more time with his kids. Boston will not have to pay the $13.25 million Dempster was set to receive for the upcoming season. Dempster has not ruled out pitching again in 2015.
  • Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer tweeted that he heard that the Reds and Homer Bailey are getting close on an extension for six years and $100 million. Hoynes believes that Bailey's possible deal is bound to influence the extension talks between the Indians and Justin Masterson.

News and Notes

  • New Cleveland signee Aaron Harang doesn't necessarily have the inside track at the fifth starters job, Jordan Bastian of reported. According to Bastian, Cleveland manager Terry Francona said: "Nothing has changed from what we've said about Carlos [Carrasco] or Josh [Tomlin]. We're just trying to have depth. We were very honest with Aaron. He's going to get a chance to show what he can do."
  • Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe wrote that there have been no talks between the Indians and Asdrubal Cabrera about extending the shortstop's stay in Cleveland. Cabrera is set to be a free agent after the 2014 season and Cafardo said he could be an option for the Yankees.
  • Cafardo also wrote that the Yankees could intensify their interest in Ervin Santana in the coming weeks. However, Joel Sherman of the New York Post reported that New York is not considering any additional free agent acquisitions.
  • Baltimore's shortstop J.J. Hardy will be a free agent after 2014, and Cafardo said the Orioles would love to be able to hold onto him.
  • Jon Heyman wrote that the Ubaldo Jimenez market has been a mystery all offseason, but the Blue Jays, Orioles, and Mariners all seem to be interested to some degree.
  • Bob Nightengale of USA Today reported that A.J. Burnett, now with the Phillies, said he did not receive much interest at all from the Nationals or the Orioles. Both teams are closer to his Maryland home than Philadelphia is.
  • The Braves have now extended four of their young stars and Joel Sherman said that shortstop Andrelton Simmons could be next.
  • The Red Sox signed former Rangers, Brewers, and Reds closer Francisco Cordero to a Minor League deal.

User Comments

February 18, 2014 - 11:17 AM EST
Masterson's "ceiling" for a contract very likely depends on if he gets a QO at the end of the year. If he does (which he will if not traded/extended) then I think his free agent ceiling is probably closer to 4 years and $60-65M.

Bailey is also younger than Masterson....Bailey will open the year at only 27 years old (though turns 28 in May). He was slated to be only 28 on Opening Day 2015 (when he coudl have been a free agent). Very few good SPs hit the open market that young. We saw Phil Hughes get decent money after struggling in NY thanks to his youth. I know most will disagree but Bailey is probably viewed as the better investment long-term than Masterson. Younger and was better in 2013. Bailey just keeps improving too. Hasn't reached his pitching ceiling yet.
February 17, 2014 - 4:20 PM EST
Based on the Indians history of never offering a pitcher a 5 year deal than the conclusion is that this will be the last year for Justin Masterson as an Indian.

This philosophy has been a management decision not ownership or combination of both.

I think the only pitchers that deserved a 5 yr deal would have been Sabathia and Lee.

February 17, 2014 - 4:00 PM EST
If Baily gets 6/100, then I believe it sets Masterson's ceiling at 6/100 as well. Can't see him getting more than that. Even with a very good 2014 season. As has been mentioned, both are similar with their production and any advantage Masterson has is kind of negated with him being a year older. And I think that could also knock him down to a 5-year $80-85M deal with someone. I see no way the Indians offer that. They have never gone more than 3 guaranteed years for any pitcher, be it a free agent, pre-arb or whatever. Perhaps there is one or two pre-arb or pre-FA exceptions I may have missed....but all examples like Sabathia, Lee, Carmona, Westbrook, Dennis Martinez, Jack McDowell, Orel Hershiser, Paul Byrd, etc were 2-3 year guaranteed deals or extensions.
February 17, 2014 - 3:06 PM EST
Then Bailey could have had a higher WAR if he did not pitch at GAB as his home park. Until last year he always was inconsistent at home because a regular hit fly ball would become a home run at GAB. He would pitch defensively instead of attacking the hitters with his stuff which could be nasty at times.
February 17, 2014 - 1:45 PM EST
WAR takes park effects into account.
February 17, 2014 - 1:33 PM EST
Living in reds country as a Tribe fan the reds believe that Bailey will become the true ace of the pitching staff. When he's on he's on. Bailey does have 2 no hitters to his record. Also remember he does pitch a hitters friendly ballpark.

I think Jimenez great second half last year is not enough to get the contract he wants.this year. He should have taken QO from the Indians initially. I think Santana will be signed before Jimenez. Only leverage he could gain if major injuries happen in which a team would be looking for starting pitching.
February 17, 2014 - 1:01 PM EST
The numbers say Masterson is the better pitcher, although they are fairly close. bWAR has Masterson at 7.8 wins over the last 3 years, Bailey at 6.1. fWAR has it 9.5 to 7.5. Masterson is also a year older, which probably negates some of the marginal difference in performance. I nee these 2 getting very similar deals.
February 17, 2014 - 12:39 PM EST
I think Bailey is better pitcher than Masterson. I believe his contract would be similar not greater than Bailey.
Joe Chengery
February 17, 2014 - 11:25 AM EST
If Homer Bailey is worth $16.7M on average per season, how much will Justin Masterson be worth? And, will the Indians pay it? Should they?

Or should they try to resign Jimenez to a cheaper long-term extension? Or will that no longer be an option (whether the Indians want to do it or not because his, and Santana's, price will both go up.

February 17, 2014 - 9:41 AM EST
That's right Rocky........they are also expecting a significant rise in revenue.....they've bought all the land around the where the stadium will go and plan to build lots of entertainment/food/beverage places......
February 17, 2014 - 8:01 AM EST
Common knowledge down here in N Georgia, the Braves are building up interest in the product to coincide with the opening of the new stadium. Look for them to lock up any talent that they believe will generate enthusiasm in the base north of the city. So far it's working pretty well.

Your Name:
Leave a Comment:
Security Code: