Last week we heard that the Giants and Buster Posey had “exchanged preliminary ideas” about a multi-year deal to buy out his remaining arbitration years. Today Jon Heyman reports that those talks continue, though there is a “decent-sized gap” between the parties. Part of that gap is contract length, with Posey apparently wanting a Joey Votto/Troy Tulowitzki-style decade deal, with the team preferring to buy out the arbitration years and take it from there.
I’d take it from there. Posey is awesome, yes, but he’s also a catcher. If he stays a catcher, you have to be mindful of wear and tear. If he doesn’t, you have to be sure he can handle another position. I imagine he can — dude used to be a shortstop, so he’s more like Biggio than he is like a late-period Piazza or Bench — but you don’t know until you’ve tried it.
I’m usually about the players getting paid, but in this case, if I were the Giants, I’d play the waiting game for a while, content that there is a good chance that, even if you only keep Posey for six years, you’re likely to be getting his best ones.
The White Sox have reportedly picked up first baseman Yonder Alonso from the Indians, according to Stadium. The return for Alonso is expected to be nothing more flashy than a “fringe prospect,” though the minutiae of the deal is still pending a formal announcement from both teams.
Alonso, 31, inked a two-year deal with the Indians during the 2017 offseason. His first campaign with the club yielded a modest .250/.317/.421 batting line, 23 home runs, .738 OPS and 0.7 fWAR in 574 PA. The real boon for the White Sox may not be a passable veteran bat, however, but something more intangible — like Alonso’s clout with his brother-in-law and highly-coveted free agent slugger, Manny Machado.
While Alonso’s 2018 output represented a significant decline from the career-best numbers he posted in 2017, he’s still a solid contributor at the plate and, more importantly, slated to remain under team control for the next two years with just $8 million owed in 2019 and a $9 million option in 2020. As MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince notes, the $17 million the Indians just erased from their payroll should give them enough room to accommodate the contracts for right-handers Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber — a bonus regardless of what they happen to get in the trade.