Originally written on Ted's Army  |  Last updated 12/18/12
Mlb_apr_24_cf11
Immediate reaction from Red Sox fans, myself included, was negative about Stephen Drew's deal. After all, $9.5 million sounds steep for a guy who suffered a massive ankle injury that disrupted his last two seasons (and who played poorly around that injury). I've since read a couple of defenses of the deal (including Jonah Keri's at Grantland and Rob Neyer's at SBNation) that have helped reinforce the point that, as free agent deals go, this might not be the disaster it seems. I looked around at shortstop contracts throughout MLB (all numbers courtesy Cot's) and found that Drew's deal doesn't look to be the outlier that it might seem originally. Below is a list of shortstops with 6+ years of service time (Drew is at 6.029, hence the cutoff there), along with their salary for next year rounded to the nearest tenth.  1. Reyes, TOR ($10.0 next year; $18.4 AAV)2. Tulowitzki, COL ($10.0 next year, $17.6 AAV)3. Jeter, NYY ($17.0)4. Ramirez, LAD ($15.5)5. Rollins, PHI ($11.0)6. Drew, BOS ($9.5)7. Aybar, LAA ($8.8)8. Furcal, STL ($7.5)9. Hardy, BAL ($7.4)10. Peralta, DET ($6.0) Drew certainly isn't likely to be as good as those first four players, and probably not Jimmy Rollins either (although Rollins is in decline and was a 2.3 WAR player last year). Aybar is a speedy singles hitter who reached 4.0 WAR last year, Furcal is a veteran on a steep decline, and Hardy and Peralta are bat-first, defense-second guys with spotty histories.  Then factoring in that you usually have to overpay on a one-year deal (as free agents typically want the security of extra years), and you can understand where the $9.5 million came from.  Of course, this comparison essentially works only for free agents (or players who signed deals that bought out free agent years, like Aybar). So Drew's deal might not look that bad in this way, and may even prove justified in a vacuum if his ankle holds up and he can squeak out 2+ WAR. The problem, as I mentioned yesterday, is that you can make the argument that Jose Iglesias and his $2.1 million salary could have provided more bang for the buck, even if he wasn't as good as Drew. And when you consider that this team is not likely to be a contender, it's worth wondering whether the Drew money could have been better spent elsewhere, either to extend young players or to set aside for a trade that can absorb money from another team.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: LeBron won't negotiate with Cavs until Thompson is signed

Andrei Kostitsyn interested in return to NHL

Blazers fire assistant who said Aldridge was leaving team

Miguel Cabrera headed to disabled list for 1st time in career

LaMarcus Aldridge chooses to sign with Spurs

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

WATCH: Serena Williams wags finger at Wimbledon crowd, says, 'Don’t try me'

Report: Rajon Rondo headed to Sacramento Kings

Dez Bryant deal with Cowboys could be announced Monday

Brandon Saad, Ryan O’Reilly sign long-term contracts with Columbus, Buffalo

Mavs solidify future, sign Wesley Matthews, DeAndre Jordan

A-Rod, Yankees settle dispute over home run milestone bonus

Report: Gregg Popovich plans to fulfill five-year contract

4-Star LB commits to Kentucky, zings Louisville

Clay Buchholz not worried about trade rumors

All hope isn't completely lost for this year's Milwaukee Brewers

Roy Hibbert likely being traded to Lakers

Watch: Pablo Sandoval falls over railing during catch

Report: Packers TE charged with firing a gun in Miami

Kawhi, LaMarcus, the mid-range and the Spurs' next epoch

How can Rafael Nadal regain his dominance?

NBA Rumors: Cavs and Spurs vying for David West

Damian Lillard is the Blazers’ new franchise player

Bryce Harper flaunts patriotic bat, hits home run

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Russell Wilson 'would definitely consider' playing for Mariners

Solo, Rapinoe among USWNT stars up for World Cup awards

LBS on Sports Jeopardy! Here's how how it went

College football's 35 most patriotic helmets

A brief history of non-star All-Stars

With Love retained, the Cavs can take care of LeBron

Grading the deal: Davis commits to Pelicans

Obama Administration: Change name if Redskins move to D.C.

Deciding what the All-Star Game means

Odell Beckham Jr. offered professional baseball contract

Orioles keep finding a way to win

Lloyd sends USWNT to World Cup final

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.