Every year at the start of free agency, Jon Heyman of CBS Sports writes an article with predictions on free agent prices, citing an unbiased GM, scout, and his own prediction for each of the top 50 free agents. It’s a fun article that gives us an idea of what the industry expects each player to receive. This year’s version of the article is significant, as it looks at what guys like Russell Martin and Francisco Liriano can expect to receive, along with the expected prices of some potential Pirates’ additions.

Martin’s price was split between five years and $70 M (agent, Heyman) and four years, $60 M. We heard earlier today that he was seeking five years and $75-80 M. I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets five years, although the $70 M figure sounds more realistic in that scenario.

The Liriano prediction is interesting. The agent predicts one year and $15.3 M, meaning he would accept the qualifying offer. Heyman and the GM predict three years, with the GM going $40 M and Heyman going $36 M. Liriano is still deciding whether to accept that offer.

The interesting thing is Edinson Volquez. His predicted price is much higher than any other prediction I’ve seen. Heyman has him at three years and $33 M. The GM has $30 M over three years. The agent has four years and $48 M. I think Volquez would be a good signing on a two-year deal that pays $8-10 M per year, but I’m not sure if he’d be worth the price at these rates.

If you’re on the “Adam LaRoche for first base” bandwagon, then the estimated price $24-26 M over two years. For reclamation starters, Brett Anderson is projected to receive $5-7 M on a one year deal. Brandon Morrow is projected for $4 M (agent), $8 M (GM), and $6 M (Heyman). Gavin Floyd is at $2-5 M, and Josh Johnson, who has health concerns, is at $3.25-4 M. If they can re-sign Martin, the Pirates would be better off going with a few of these reclamation projects, rather than trying to bring in Liriano and another starter. That would allow them to also pursue an upgrade at first base.

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11 COMMENTS

  1. Funny but the teams with the highest paid players suck at playoff time. Keeping these expensive players has become an anchor.

  2. Michael Cuddyer turned down a $15.3 million one year deal from the Rockies to sign a $21 million two year deal ($8.5 first year, $12.5 second year) with the NY Mets – ??? I realize that he is 35, this will probably be his last contract, and he was injured a lot of last year, but still, when you are near the end, why not take the qualifying offers until they are no longer offered.

  3. As I have said before, I like watching Volquez pitch, but I am sticking with my offer of two years and $16 million. Take it or leave it.

  4. I would NEVER give Volquez a multi-year deal – especially not 3-4 years. His long term track record is not good. I also would not give Liriano anything beyond 2 years – I think his health and inconsistent performance history make him too risky to go 3 or more.

    • why Headley for so much. His ops was 700 last year and 747 in 2013. He might do great with Bucs but if last 2 years are what he is going to do in future 12 million is a big overpay. He’s had one monster year where he hit 31 homers and had a 286 average. Has never hit more than 13 in any other season, one time he has hit 289, rest of career in 260’s.

      • I guess the evaluators in the Heyman article bring defense and PETCO into account. His OPS was over .760 in the 2nd half after leaving Petco.

        WAR… if you’re into that sort of thing… likes him a lot.

        • His career home road splits are large. 711 vs. 799, also has big splits between first and second half, 718 first and 804 second. I still would put him in risky category. He strikes out over 25% of time.

  5. My goodness. Three guaranteed years for Edinson Volquez? Incredible.

    I honestly don’t see much reason to do anything BUT sign reclamation projects with the direction free agency is taking.

    • with the numbers mentioned in the article the pirates can do it. I was surprised to see the price tag in the $14 million range I expected it to be a little higher. Josh Johnson would be a great sign maybe a similar deal to what he signed with the Padres last year only for less guaranteed in the first year.

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