Jon Heyman ads a smidgen more to Buster’s earlier tweet:
“[The Cardinals] offered holliday
at least 6 years and $100-million-plus at some point. but he didnt
accept and is still talking to multiple teams“
That particular wording doesn’t necessarily clarify anything. “[A]t least
6 years” could still mean that it was $100 million over, say, eight
years with option years as a part of that. “he didn’t accept” doesn’t
mean that he rejected it, and “is still talking to multiple teams”
doesn’t mean that they’re seriously talking back to him. Despite what appears to be an attempt by someone to show otherwise, there’s nothing here that suggests anything new in the Cardinals-Holliday relationship.
Indeed, the events of today — from the baloney Ringolsby report about the Orioles offer
to this slow leak of an offer from the Cardinals that seems geared to
sound higher than it really is smacks of Boras trying to talk up
Holliday’s market and create some energy where not much exists. I
suspect that there’s panic on the streets of Newport Beach after the
Bay deal and the Yankees’ firm statement that they’re not interested. Holliday and Boras know that there’s not much else
out there besides the Cardinals offer and they’re trying to drum something up.
If there really are “other teams,” as first Ringolsby and now Heyman report, I’d love for someone to name one
without having it denied ten minutes later. Until then, I’m going to
believe that this is just a lot of smoke, and it’s the result of Boras
rubbing sticks together, not any heat emanating from any real pursuit
of Matt Holliday.
Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant was one of the most prominent examples of service time manipulation in recent memory. He was ranked as the No. 1 prospect in baseball going into the 2015 season by Baseball America. He then had an incredible spring, batting .425 with a spring-high nine home runs and 15 RBI. The Cubs, however, didn’t add him to the Opening Day roster, instead keeping him in Triple-A for the first two weeks of the season, ensuring the club would get another year of control over Bryant because he wouldn’t accrue enough service time. He made his debut on April 17 and the rest was history. Bryant won the 2015 NL Rookie of the Year Award.
While the MLB Players Association filed a grievance on his behalf, Bryant didn’t say anything. But it was a learning moment for him. The same is true of the past offseason, which Bryant says “opened my eyes,” as Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times reports. He now considers labor issues a priority, saying, “I need to study up, have my voice heard, continue to learn, because this is going to affect us for years to come. And I’d be foolish not to kind of offer myself out there.”
As Wittenmyer notes, Bryant hopes to replace Jake Arrieta as the Cubs’ player reprensentative. The players make that decision later this month. Bryant also vowed to fight for the next collective bargaining agreement. He said, “Maybe the focus was on other things rather than some of the more important things. But I think with this next one things are definitely going to change, and there’ll definitely be more fight on our side just because we’re going to get the chance to experience the effects of some of the things we agreed to. The only way to get what you want here is to fight for it. And I think you’re going to see a lot of that.”
It’s good to see Bryant motivated by recent economic developments in baseball. Hopefully more players take his lead and become more informed, arming themselves with all of the tools they need to create a better situation for themselves when the current CBA expires.