Don’t look now, but the MLB offseason is almost over. Granted, there are still free agents such as James Shields remaining, and likely a few players changing jerseys via trade before the season starts, but Spring Trainings is less than a month away. We’ve had a busy offseason, so let’s look at the top three major mistakes made by Major League clubs to this point in the offseason.
Mistake: The Astros Trade for Evan Gattis
The Atlanta Braves had all but begged teams to take OF/C Evan Gattis off their hand when the Houston Astros came calling. They offered the Braves three highly regarded prospects in right-hander Mike Foltynewicz, third baseman Rio Ruiz and right-hander Andrew Thurman. That’s a lot just to bring in Evan Gattis.
Now, maybe you go out and bring in Gattis for closer to what he’s worth, but the Astros just flatout over payed for what I consider an average player. The Astros have always been one of those “we’ll win when our prospects are developed” teams, and while this was a bad move, maybe it’s sign of a new approach from the Astros’ front office.
Mistake: The Rays Trade OF Wil Myers
Maybe trading Wil Myers was the best move for the Rays organization, but the timing could not have been worse. Myers, who was the 2013 American Rookie of the Year, is coming off an atrocious 2014 season. Essentially, Myers’ trade value was as low as it could possibly be when this deal was agreed upon. That point connects to my next, which is the fact that the Rays got a pitifully low return haul in the trade that sent Myers out of Tampa.
Steven Souza, formerly of the Nationals, was the primary piece heading back to Tampa Bay. Myers is only 24 years old, almost two years younger than Souza, who turns 26 in April. Myers has 175 career games of experience in the Major Leagues, compared to 21 for Souza. This deal felt like the Rays were giving up on Myers, the Padres saw that, and took advantage of the Tampa Bay Rays.
Mistake: The Marlins Give OF Giancarlo Stanton $325 Million
This offseason, the Marlins signed OF Giancarlo Stanton to a 13-year, $325 million extension, the largest contract in North American sports history. Yes, Giancarlo Stanton is one of the best in baseball, and he is only 25-years-old, but let’s face it, these type of deals just don’t end well. Just ask the Yankees about Alex Rodriguez.
While it is not a guarantee, injuries happen all the time, and it doesn’t matter how big your contract is. So, if anything goes wrong for Stanton, this deal will drastically hold the future of the Marlins back. In fact, it could hurt the Marlins’ down the line whether Stanton is hurt or not. His deal takes up a drastic chunk of the payroll, which will eventually hurt Miami as they try to improve.