I think the “sterod area” skewed the expectation of what aging players can do and thus skewed the salaries they are offered. It is just now starting (and I stress STARTING) to come back to earth. Unfortunately, it looks like the trend is that you have to pay 10 years worth of salary to obtain 5 – 6 years of the level of play ( if you are lucky) you are paying for and just live with the last 4 -5 years of sub-level play.
It is nice to see him stop walking the first batter.
He had so few “clean” (no walks, no hits) appearences last year in his saves. Good to see a few now. Kimbrel flirted with putting Reyes on, but Reyes fouled off ball four @ 3-2 before he struck out on the next pitch.
Mark @82, I’m not so sure about that. I think more teams realize aging patterns of players, so teams give smaller contracts to some free agents, although teams are still going to give huge contracts to the great free agents. Plus some teams may overvalue certain free agents and still hand out somewhat ludicrous contracts.
Also, I think it’s easier to know how to value players these days, with everyone having access to more information and easier processing of information. We now have a better sense of what a win is worth in the free agent market and teams can use that as a starting point in negotiations and in their own budget.
But I don’t know that the steroid era inflated contracts. Sure PEDs, along with better nutrition and fitness, may have allowed some players to stick around longer but, if everyone had access to PEDs and better nutrition and fitness, the aging patterns of players wouldn’t change and didn’t seem to during that era. A player in his 20s had the same access to PEDs as a player in his 30s, so the way players age didn’t change drastically, at least that’s the idea and, from what I understand, the data seems to support that.
Also, I think with free agency in general teams realize they pay for the first several productive years and realize there is likely to be a decline in later years. Most teams probably accept this because they realize it’s about the only way to get certain players. Another thing that comes in to play is that if a free agent signing works out and leads to more wins, no one cares about the later years of overpaying for less production and, if a free agent signing doesn’t work out, the bad contracts become another GM’s problem.
My point was PEDs tended to make players more productive later in their careers. i.e. it wasn’t totally unexpected to have a 35, 36, 37 year old star to keep playing everyday and still be producing at a high level. Therefore, the expectation was teams would offer a 30 year old player a 5, 6, 7+ high-dollar contract because players in the past had been contributing to the end of those contracts. Not so much now…
@88 – nothing yet on Twitter which is where we’ll hear first.
Also on Freeman – just read DOB’s story about his switch back to contacts and how the glasses don’t work (blind spot created by the nose piece). That is bad news. It’s all well and good to have tears flowing at an indoor stadium, but this may get bad again.
#90, I can’t believe were going through another eye issue with a key middle of the order piece. I’ve never had eye issues myself (knock on wood) but what he’s experiencing sounds extremely uncomfortable.
Mark @89, it would be an interesting topic to look in to. I’m a little skeptical that there were any more players who remained productive in to their late 40′s than in years past and, if there were, that PED’s were the main cause.
I know this is a very crude way to do any sort of research and therefore shouldn’t be taken too seriously , on Fangraphs, I pulled up the over-35 WAR leaders since 1970. While there are a few PED-era players and players who were either known PED users or strongly suspected of using, there are plenty in the top 30 who either didn’t play in that era or who weren’t suspected of using PEDs.
I picked 1970 because I figured that would maybe give us a somewhat equal number of past years in and out of the PED era. But of course those years could be called the Greenies Era.
I saw J.C. Boscan listed on a “should sell high” prospect list, saying his defense is really good and it is expected that his hitting will develop, but he could turn out to not be a regualr major leaguer. It said Braves should trade him for piece to help this year.
Possibly affected the draft picks? Planning to trade him?
Plenty of high profile players remain productive in their later years and did before the PED era. I don’t know if these types of players having productive years into their late 30′s, to 40′s in some cases, would have necessarily swayed teams to take chances on signing other, older free agents. Those are the type players who are always going to get fairly big contracts later in their careers, PEDs or no PEDs, seems to me.