Sherman: Jeter Improving At SS Bad For Negotiations

[image title=”derek-jeter” size=”full” id=”14637″ align=”center” linkto=”full” ]
From Joel Sherman:

Second, the good news for the Yanks is that Jeter is a competent shortstop again; the bad news is he is a competent shortstop again.
At age 35, he was the AL’s best all-around shortstop last year, finishing third in the MVP vote, winning a Gold Glove (more deservedly than in the past) and being a force on a champion. He is in the same training regimen for the third straight offseason and if 2010 resembles 2009, the Yanks will be very pleased, well, until negotiations begin.
This would have been a different negotiation if Jeter was holding on as a left fielder or DH, being kept around mostly for emeritus reasons. Now the Yanks almost certainly will have to treat Jeter as the current and future shortstop of the team, and not the kind of defensive liability that enabled them to play hardball in pushing Williams and Damon off the roster.

I would not paint Jeter’s defensive renaissance as bad news. Yes, it does make negotiations a bit more difficult in terms of keeping Jeter’s cost down. However, I think that it is highly likely that the Yankees would have been forced to pay Jeter an exorbitant sum regardless of what position he might have been headed for. This contract, as unfortunate as this may be, is likely to be just as much a reward for past performance as it is compensation for future contributions. I firmly believed prior to 2009 that he would get around 18-20 million a season for 3-4 years, and he simply put himself at the upper end of those ranges with his great season. Another great season may add a few million to those totals, but it is unlikely that it will move the contract into an area that the Yankees cannot afford or will be unwilling to pay. As such, the fact that he has improved defensively can only be a good thing.

If Jeter continues to display his newfound defensive prowess in 2010, the Yankees will simply be paying big dollars to someone they believe can remain at his position for a number of years, as opposed to someone who might have to learn a new position at some point during the life of the contract. Derek Jeter was always going to get a large contract. Now it seems like he actually has a chance to earn it.

0 thoughts on “Sherman: Jeter Improving At SS Bad For Negotiations

  1. Ugh, I love Jeter. I just don’t understand why it would be good for the team to sign him to an excess contract. No other team would give him half what the Yankees would offer. Yes, he was worth 33 million last year (according to Fangraphs), but he was worth a little over half what he was paid the previous two seasons. It just makes zero sense to pay for what has been done. He should get paid for what he will do, otherwise he will become another Posada deal. Considering as he gets older, his numbers will go down (only Mo and wine get better with age), he should get paid accordingly. I have no problem giving him 25 million a year on a year to year approach, or going 3 for 45 million. More then that is just not worth it, IMO.

    • I think he will get 4 years, 80 Million. He is worth more to the team than his on field impact, and I could see him being worth about 60 million in on-field value over that span.

      • I understand that marketing makes him worthwhile. That said, the Yankees have plenty of other players that would fill the role of marketing, Jeter would look like the bad guy for turning down 3 at 60 (for instance), and I believe that all Jeter memorabilia is evenly divided 30 ways, so they would get the same cut whether he plays on the Yankees or the Padres.

      • Hello Moshe..I say 5 years at around 20 ,21 mil . reason being, including this year 180 plus hits a year average for 6 years puts him third all time, and an outside shot if he is in real good shape for 1 more year to get him 4k… that mile marker is a hugh year he gets 3k early.. do you factor the team and jeter in the contract talks??

  2. What a bizarre article. If Sherman cares so much about Yankee finances he should thank his lucky starts Jeter will be negotiating with Cashman and not little George.

  3. Sherman is a solid baseball writer, but many times he falls over himself to come up with potential Yankee “negatives”. I guess that’s part of his job to find/make controversies, but as you mentioned above how could Jeter improving his defense be a bad thing? If that’s the case is Cashman rooting for Rivera to have an ERA above 3 and mediocre WHIP instead of his usual numbers to pay him less next off season?! If the veterans perform well they will get paid handsomely. I’m sure Cash, Hal and co. prefer that to the alternative.

    • “Sherman is a solid baseball writer, but many times he falls over himself to come up with potential Yankee “negatives”.”

      Right, because he’s a die-hard Mets fan who thinks like one. If you couldn’t figure that out last year when he bashed the stadium the day after it opened, in an attempt to piss all over the party the Yanks were having, I don’t know what would convince folks.

      If you’ve ever heard Joel interviewed, he admits to not being a Yankee fan but thinks that’s irrelevant. He also gets very passionate about how the Mets are run, but dances around the question of whether or not he roots for the team. He’s a Mets fan. That’s cool, but it colors how he sees the Yanks and all they do.

      • I like Joel because he seems to generally be reasonable and not afraid to learn new things, but he does tend to be a bit of contrarian regarding the Yankees.