Jose Reyes’ new contract is extremely backloaded

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The Marlins finalized their six-year, $106 million agreement with shortstop Jose Reyes on Wednesday afternoon at baseball’s Winter Meetings in Dallas. What they didn’t reveal is how dangerously backloaded the money on that contract is. Here’s the tweet from Joel Sherman of the New York Post:

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In other words, Reyes will earn just $10 million in 2012 and 2013, $16 million in 2014, then a whopping $22 million annually between 2015-2017. Which may or may not create some problems.

The Marlins, as with any franchise debuting a new stadium, have a few guaranteed years of strong attendance numbers. People will want to see the place, and they’ll want to see the new stars that the Fish are bringing in this offseason. But what happens if those attendance numbers begin to dwindle after the initial rush? What happens if Miami misses the playoffs for the first few seasons at the new park in Little Havana and the buzz suddenly wears off? Good luck executing another fire-sale with that kind of guaranteed money.