Melky Cabrera agrees with White Sox on 3-year deal
The outcome was seen as inevitable, but we finally have confirmation that Melky Cabrera will not return tot he Toronto Blue Jays for the 2015 season. After watching his market develop slowly, the outfielder came to terms on with the Chicago White Sox per Bruce Levine of the 670 The Score.
Per Levine the deal is for three years. Jon Heyman of CBS Sports later confirmed that the contract will be worth $42 million over, or an average of $14 million, over the life of the deal.
While it represents a significant raise over the 2-year, $16 million deal he was playing under with the Toronto Blue Jays the last two seasons, it is also a far cry from the deal that Cabrera was looking to land. After putting together a .301/.351/.458 batting line with 16 home runs, 73 RBI, a wRC+ of 125, and a fWAR of 2.6, Cabrera was thought to be looking for a 5-year contract. However, that market never developed for him, with both the Orioles and the Seattle Mariners said to interested but unwilling to go beyond three years themselves.
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What makes it all the more interesting is that it appears that Alex Anthopoulos correctly pegged Cabrera’s market nearly a month ago. It was rumored that the Blue Jays offered Melky a 3-year, $39 million deal in order to return to the Blue Jays early this winter, but Cabrera was looking for something closer to $50 million overall. When he declined the Blue Jays offer, Toronto shifted gears, allocating that money to other pieces, including landing Cabrera’s replacement in left field, Michael Saunders.
While many may lament that the Blue Jays didn’t come up with an extra $3 million over three years, the fact is that Cabrera overplayed his hand a bit and Toronto was forced to move on with their plans, unable to go where Melky wanted them to.
In the end, Melky Cabrera got closer to the $50 million he was looking for, but not by much and he failed to land the 5-year deal he was looking for. However, the Blue Jays recoup the draft pick they lost by signing Russell Martin and the team moves on with a new left fielder.