Wednesday, April 4, 2012
Joey Votto Signs 10 Year Deal
Joey Votto and the Cincinnati Reds agreed to a 10 year deal worth $225 million dollars., he previously signed a 2 year deal worth $26m, all together that adds up to 12 years for $251.5 million dollars. The 10 year contract does not start until the 2014 season though. That's more than Prince Fielder got in free agency (9 years, $214 million) and Albert Pujols' contract (10 years, $240 million). As a whole the contract will keep Joey Votto in a Reds uniform until he is 40 years.
Votto's AAV is $20.9 million dollars, which is slightly lower than Pujols' AAV of $24 million dollars, and Fielder's AAV of $23.8 million dollars. The couple years of the deal will result in a loss of money for the Reds, but the last three years aren't what matter. The years that matter are the first 5-6 years of the contract. Starting in 2014 Votto will be making $22.5 million dollars. The past three seasons the Reds' payroll has hovered between $75-$80 million dollars. This means that Votto alone will be taking up roughly 25% of the Reds payroll, it will be interesting to see how they use the rest of the money when it comes to free agents and signing their own players.
Like I previously mentioned, Joey Votto is starting the year at 28 years old and he doesn't turn 29 until September. During the first few years Votto should be able to maintain 5.5-6 WAR and then slowly decline as he ages. After the first 6 years of the contract he will still be 34 years old, there's no reason why he can't produce 3-4 WAR as a 34 year old.
Since Joey Votto started playing in the big leagues full time during the 2008 season he has had a WAR of 22.9, second only to Albert Pujols' 30.6 WAR, in terms of first baseman. During that same time period he's also ranked second in OBP (.406 to Pujols' .421), and third in wRC+. To put it in simple terms Joey Votto is one of the best offensive first baseman in the game.
Votto has also shown that he can play really good defense. Since 2008 he has had a UZR of 11.7, -1.1, 1.6, and 7.4. Based on those results it's safe to say that Votto is an above average defender, giving him even more value.
After taking everything into consideration this was a deal that the Reds had to make. As Votto is in his prime he should be able to make the deal worth it after the first 6 or so years. If the Reds want to win a title while Votto is there though they will have to find ways to sign free agents and their own players while maintaining their own players.