LaRoche Lands with the D-backs (with Kelly Johnson)

Adam LaRoche played hardball and lost…well, maybe he lost. John Heyman tweets that LaRoche agreed to a one-year contract between $4–$5 million. Supposedly, LaRoche turned down a two-year offer from the San Francisco Giants that for $17.5 million. So, that has to be a big let down.

I’m kind of surprised LaRoche decided to settle on this offer. I have him valued at about twice what he’s getting from the D-Backs, and about what the Giants reportedly offered him. If he was willing wait this long, why not wait a little longer? I can see him thinking the market is depressed, and he’s already plenty wealthy ($16m in career earnings), taking a year to reestablish his value and get a longer term deal. Preferences are subjective, but this seems like an awful risk, if this is his motivation.

His signing by the Diamondbacks reminded me that I had yet to comment on Kelly Johnson joining Arizona a few weeks ago. Johnson agreed to a $2.35 million contract to play for one season. Johnson had a bad 2010 that just screams fluke, and has the underlying patience and power skills that normally make a good ballplayer. Even factoring in his bad 2009, I have him as a $7.5 million player. Johnson also supposedly spurned higher offers from other clubs.

The market may very well be way down for these players, but I wonder if there is something that the D-backs are doing to attract players to play for less, especially players looking for a short-term audition. Maybe having the young A.J. Hinch, a controversial hire, was part of the plan to attract such players.

2 Responses “LaRoche Lands with the D-backs (with Kelly Johnson)”

  1. Marc Schneider says:

    I think the Braves may regret losing Kelly Johnson, as aggravating as he frequently was. I’m not convinced Prado is the superior player.

    As for LaRoche, the argument that he is already wealthy would say to me that he can do whatver he damn well wants to do. It’s not much of risk if your choice is betwen being rich and being very rich.

  2. David says:

    Is he looking to boost his raw stats by playing half his games in Chase rather than AT&T? The D-Backs play the Pirates in the first week of the season, but the Giants have more punching bags in the first couple months, facing the Pirates and the Nationals.

    Oh well, nice pickup for AZ.