Westhead: Bautista Is Asking For Five Years, $150-Million


Welp. The (hopefully permanent) falling apart of the Jay Bruce trade can wait a few moments because TSN’s Rick Westhead would like to explode your mind:

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That’s… um… a lot. A whoooole lot.

Dave Cameron of FanGraphs says that “no team would give him this. No team would even consider it.”

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Keith Law asks, “For his age 36 to 40 seasons? Really?”

And for me, what immediately jumps to mind is how badly Bautista’s agent, Jay Alou, played his hand when Ervin Santana went through free agency in the winter before 2014. Because hoo boy, this is a hand that looks like it’s awfully overplayed right now.

That is, if we believe the report.

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That’s the second thing that jumps to mind (because apparently I’m a total cynic — who knew?).

As much as I shouldn’t let this be the thing that always comes up whenever Westhead reports something, he diiiiid say that the Jays were making a play for Zack Greinke back in November. This sounds less crazy than that, but not by a whole lot.

Could somebody be floating this for the purposes of making Jose look bad, unreasonable, delusional, and impossible for the Jays to deal with? That’s certainly a leap to make, but if you were going to do a thing like that, this is probably the avenue you’d take.

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But, with apologies to Jose if it’s way off, it doesn’t seem too outlandish for someone with the kind of self-belief Bautista has — someone who takes care of his body like few others, and can not unreasonably argue that he’s a young 35 in baseball terms, because he spent so much of his early career on the bench.

It’s just… uh… it’s totally outlandish. In debating this with Fairservice and several Sportsnet guys at a Pitch Talks event a few weeks ago, we figured that $100-million might the number Jose would set his sights on, and even then it was debatable whether that was a reasonable ask. So $150-million? A $30-million salary every year for ages 36 to 40?

That’s crazy and it sucks.

And if someone from the team is floating false information in order to push the “greedy player” narrative and shift either leverage or public goodwill back towards the team, well then that’s crazy and shitty, too.

I don’t know what it all means, of course. But I do know that this isn’t the last we’ll be hearing of it.


Didn’t I tell you that wasn’t the last we’d be hearing of it? Bautista has rubbished the report:

Appropriately, Richie Football provides the kicker:

Probably! Or… I don’t even know what to believe anymore.

Image via.

  • Blue Jay Rasmus

    OK, if I were Jose and *making demands* I would probably ask for 5 years/$125 Million. Right? Rogers is rich, there will be immense pressure to re-sign him, etc. (you know, plus all the things Stoeten mentioned)

    I mean, 4/100 is on the outer bounds of reasonable … or 5/110 if you want that fifth year guaranteed, so… 5/125, that’s where I’d open my negotiation.


  • Nica

    Jose is a beast. The heart and face of the Jays. Love him. Jose is on the wrong side of 35. Its just nature. It happens.
    How badly do the Angels or the Rangers want out of their Fat Albert or Broken Hamilton contracts ?

    There’s a bitter irony that Jose can talk about no ” home town ” discount. I agree. Despite the Jays giving him his last kick at the can and already setting up his family for life. he can’t have it both ways though. There is no GM in the league- let alone Shapiro/ Atkins– that will pay a 35 year old slugger huge long term money based on what he has done in the past for his ” home town”.
    I wish him well. Have a monster year. Hit FA. Get what you can. And let the Jays collect their pick.

    • good points, coupla things tho…

      yes, wrong side of 35, but he doesn’t have many miles on that 35-yr old body, being a relative late-bloomer. i mean, it’s not like the early part of his career he was just sitting around, but he wasn’t playing 150 games/yr in his early 20’s either.

      with respect to not giving a home town discount, he’s looking at it from a big picture, in that why should he, coming off what turned into a huuuuge team-friendly deal and in his mind already giving them a discount for the last few years, give an ownership group that’s one of the richest in the sport a(nother) discounted deal?

      • mktoronto

        I think what people fear here is that the ‘nation’ site and brand is already established, and Stoeten won’t likely be able to enact the sort of changes people want, like the old threaded discussions.

        • mktoronto

          I have the same fear. But it’s day two and both Andrew and the managing editor of this site are asking for feedback. I’m willing to give it a couple of weeks to see what can be done.

          • OakvilleJays

            I think Stoeten should be able to make the necessary improvements to the site. I would like to be able to get a notification when someone upticks or downticks my posts.

            I also want to know when someone replies to my comments.

      • Cock Flakes

        I thought the comment format was the best part about the change from DJF to Andrewstoeten.com. I am not sure what he can do to fix this comment forum. I guess it really is a comment section as opposed a discussion forum.

        • mktoronto

          That’s the difference! I’ve been trying to describe it. Thanks.

          SOSH started out as a discussion board and then created a site with content to compliment it. Maybe we can do it the other direction?

          • OakvilleJays

            Agred MK.

            I want the Discuss system back. I can’t follow any comments to me that easily under this new system. I have to go through all the comments.

            I enjoy going back & forth with you & the other regulars.

  • Jay (not J)

    Hard to be reasonable or detached about this. Jose has been a value contract for the Jays for years and each season he has continued to contribute at a high level. He certainly didn’t look like he was getting old last October when he took back the team MVP mantle from Donaldson who was not able to bring the rain when the runners were on base. At the same time how can Shappy bet that he wont fall off over the course of that deal? This kind of looks like a no win situation for management, especially in light of Jose’s ‘I gave them the number they can take it or leave it’ line.

  • Paul22

    If that’s true then Joey simply wants out since its simply not happening, and everyone knows it. Maybe he wants to force a trade and not be held back by draft pick compensation.

    I hope he takes out an insurance policy like Scherzer. An injury deflates his market value, much farther south than 150 million, like a balloon that lands on a hot stove.

    • OakvilleJays

      I do wonder about that. A qualifying offer on Bautista would have some effect on his next contract.

      However, it’s not that big a deal.

      I could see the Yankees, Red Sox & Dodgers pouncing on Bautista if he became a free agent.

      Shapiro may welcome an opportunity to trade Bautista since it would reduce expectations on the team being able to compete in 2016-2019.

      McCown had a guest on his show tonight discussing trading Bautista during spring training. Mccown seemed to be unaware of his no trade clause ( 10-5 ) rights.

        • Paul22

          Yes, teams will accept losing a pick, but Bautista and his agent know they end up paying for it since teams account for the monetary value of the loss in their offer. So 110 million becomes 100 million

          • JustinTet

            Yeah. It really hurt Grienke too. Imagine how much he would have gotten without that pick around his neck. QOs only affect marginal players, not superstars.

        • OakvilleJays

          Shapiro has the PR & media support to try to trade Bautista this year.

          There is a segment of the fan base that will be outraged at Bautista asking for a 100M + contract.

          If the team is faltering during the season, pressure will rise on Shapiro to try & trade Bautista to get better prospects than what a qualifying pick would yield.

          Shapiro may have a chance to sell fans on a rebuild for 2017-2020.

          He could let EE,Cecil, Bautista & Dickey go .

          Dickey, Bautista & EE will be worth qualifying picks.

          Shapiro came into the Jays after their first playoff appearance since 1993.

          If the team is struggling at the deadline, he will have enough media support to trade the potential free agents & begin the rebuild.

          A rebuild in 2017 would lower fan expectations, so he could focus on getting the team competitive by the time his contract ends in 2020.

          2016 is a make it or break it year for the Jays

        • OakvilleJays

          I think this will be a very interesting season for the Jays. I am not happy about all the drama with Bautista & EE.

          I hope the Jays get off to a strong start & are in a playoff spot at the deadline.

          This would reduce the chances that Shapiro tries to trade EE or JB.

          I am worried that the media will pounce on every losing streak & ask Shapiro if he plans to trade Jose or EE.

          I would like to enjoy the baseball season & not get caught up with all the drama.

          I hope Bautista & the Jays work out a deal.

  • Steve-O

    Couldn’t it be Joses way of saying

    …this is my pipe dream scenario
    I don’t expect you to actually give me this
    But it’s the premium it will cost you if you want me to give up exploring free agency waters at years end

  • Joe McD.

    I like the way Jose is sticking it to Rogers. All you need to know about Rogers is, instead of a statue of Joe Cater or Robbie out front , it’s freakin Ted Rogers.

  • Canard

    Obviously $150 million is ridiculous. (And further updates suggest as much.) But had $150 million been true, the way to go is to hold on to Bautista this year, give him a qualifying offer, and then wait for Bautista to see that no one is going to give him $150 million.

    After he sees what teams are willing to give him, bring him back and make an offer near that. That’s fair.

  • Paul22

    For me the comments are fine. I actually don’t like nested comments much. However, I would like to see an edit feature, so my old eyes miss many typos until I hit the reply button, and then its sink or edit

  • mktoronto

    I too enjoyed Joey Batts giving it to Rogers by exposing their gazillions of profit after the trade dead line. Always remember that the ultra cheap Rogers counts paper clips and staples.

    I’m not sure the new Yankees would be willin to spend that amount. They already have several senior citizens on their roster who seem to be on the d.l. more than they are on the field. They also let Cano walk which would never have happened under George.

    The organization I see Bautista going to is the Dodgers who can’t spend enough which includes six ex G.M.’s. One being A.A. who I think would really push for Bautista. L.A. of course also has the huge latino population. So my better money is L.A.

  • We’re still getting loads of Stoeten input. It’s just that the comments – and which genius out there figured this format was a good idea – are all over the place. I have my doubts as to whether that can be fixed, but that’s half the reason I tune in.

  • JustinTet

    Leaking outlandish numbers now then facing the backlash when he’s playing in the Bronx under a totally reasonable deal a year from now would seem like an awfully shortsighted PR strategy.