Pay The Man: Orioles Should Offer Wieters Long-Term Deal

April 12, 2012 | Joe Giglio

Carlos Santana. Matt Moore. Elvis Andrus. Jonathan Niese.

What do those players have in common? They are all young, rising stars in baseball who were given contracts well before their free agency became a story.

Dan Duquette has been handed a very difficult job in Baltimore, but he can take a big step towards solving the issues at hand by erasing a future one.

It’s time for Matt Wieters to sign a long-term contract with the Baltimore Orioles. No, he’s not a free agent anytime soon — the 2011 All-Star catcher isn’t set to hit the open market until 2016 — and still has a full year before even becoming arbitration eligible. There is no pressing need to get a deal done, but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be a priority. In fact,  a contract offer could go a long way to mending the mistake  Baltimore made this off-season by renewing his contract at their price.

“They have the right to offer any contract they want,” Wieters said. “That’s their right. I’m just ready to play baseball.”

John Hart — the former Cleveland Indians general manager — created an organizational structure in the late 90’s that helped make that franchise a power for years. His philosophy — now copied by almost every successful executive — centered on locking up young, talented players to long-term deals before they “deserved” it. In other words, Hart would project out their career and offer them a team-friendly deal, but considerably more than the player was making in the moment.

Arbitration is fickle thing in baseball. No team truly wants to be a part of the process because of the adverse effects on the player-ownership relationship. The Orioles may or may not send out press releases pertaining to all the hearings they have won in the Peter Angelos era, but don’t mistake that for an enjoyment of the process. Offering Wieters a deal now can help both parties avoid the headache that is surely to arise over the next three off-seasons.

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5 Comments For This Post

  1. eric Says:

    Good luck getting Boras to give up FA years. You’re wasting your energy writing this

  2. Unitastoberry Says:

    Good litmus test here to see of its same old losing Os.$$$ign him now!

  3. Joe Giglio Says:

    Rockies OF Carlos Gonzalez, a Boras client, signed a 7-year deal last year with Colorado buying out all of his arbitration years and first three years of FA. Boras doesn’t typically do it, but it happens.

  4. Glenn in Timonium Says:

    I’m thinking Boras will want to see this young man wearing pinstripes.

  5. Eric Says:

    Wieters won’t sign here. Much bigger paydays from winning organizations elsewhere. Why commit long term to these toxic losers?

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