The Cardinals will be paying Matt Holliday until 2029

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When the first reports of Matt Holliday’s deal came out they said that
the contract was not backloaded. I suppose that’s technically accurate in that he’ll receive the same amount of money for all seven years of the active part of the deal, but that doesn’t exactly tell the whole story:

The St. Louis Cardinals will be paying Matt Holliday through 2029 under
the $120 million, seven-year contract that is likely to be finalized
Thursday.  Holliday will get $17 million a season in salary, but $2 million a year
will be deferred without interest, a person familiar with the
negotiations told The Associated Press on Wednesday.

I guess that’s less than 20 years from now, but when you say “2029” it seems like an impossibly long time into the future. Like, I get this image of his last check being delivered to him via flying car to his home on a colony on the moon or something.

Not that this is the most notable deferred money deal of all time.  Back in 2000, Bobby Bonilla struck a deal with the Mets in which the team purchased an annuity rather than pay him the remaining $5.9 million of deferred money that he was owed from his 1992 contract. Every July 1st, starting in 2011 and lasting until 2035, Bonilla will receive $1.19 million.  Bonilla is going to be 72 on the day he receives his last payment.

Dave Roberts: It “doesn’t make sense” for Scott Kazmir to start year in Dodgers’ rotation

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Scott Kazmir won’t begin the regular season in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Manager Dave Roberts said after Kazmir’s Cactus League outing on Sunday that it “doesn’t make sense” for the ailing Kazmir to break camp in the rotation, Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times reports. The lefty will instead rehab some more and join the rotation at a later time.

Kazmir has been battling a hip issue which has caused his mechanics to suffer. He was clocked in the low 80’s 10 days ago and wasn’t much better on Sunday afternoon.

Last season with the Dodgers, Kazmir posted a 4.56 ERA with a 134/52 K/BB ratio in 136 1/3 innings, his worst numbers since returning to the majors in 2013.

Robert Gsellman wins spot in Mets’ rotation

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Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that Robert Gsellman has won the No. 4 spot in the Mets’ starting rotation. He adds that the Mets are likely to play things cautiously with lefty Steven Matz. The fifth and final rotation spot will go to either Zack Wheeler or Seth Lugo.

Gsellman, 23, has had a great spring. The right-hander has allowed three earned runs on 15 hits and four walks with nine strikeouts in 17 1/3 innings. That is on the heels of seven solid starts at the end of the 2016 season during which he yielded 12 earned runs on 40 hits and 12 walks with 40 strikeouts in 41 innings.

Matz, 25, is dealing with irritation in his left elbow. He had surgery in October to remove a bone spur and was a Tommy John patient several years ago. It sounds like the Mets are leaning towards having him start the season on the disabled list.

Wheeler, 26, isn’t having a great spring. He’s surrendered seven runs in 7 1/3 innings. Lugo has given up three earned runs in seven spring innings and also looked solid in the World Baseball Classic although he took the loss in the final against the United States.