Would you sign the $30 million man?

Alex Rodriguez is having a monster season, and he has an opt out in his contract after this season. He is also represented by Scott Boras, so he will opt out and become a free agent. Rodriguez is not especially happy in New York, has openly feuded with team captain Derek Jeter and there are plenty of teams that would make space in their payroll for a player of his caliber. If he goes to free agency, most sources have him signing a long-term deal (6-8 years) for about $30 million per season.

The Yankees are trying to extend his contract, but Rodriguez has repeatedly said he won’t negotiate during the season. New York has already said that if he opts out, they will not get involved in a bidding war to regain his services. The Texas Rangers will be paying over $10 million per year of the remaining three years of his contract, so the Yankees currently have him at a relatively cheap $15 million per year.

Rodriguez was nearly traded to Boston in 2003, but the player’s union nixed the salary restructuring needed for the deal. That’s when George Steinbrenner swooped in to snag Rodriguez. It’s said that Larry Lucchino would still love to sign A-Rod, who could supplant Mike Lowell at third base, whose contract is up at the end of this year. If the Sox allow Curt Schilling ($13M), Lowell ($9M) and Matt Clement ($9M) to all walk, that would free up the necessary wiggle room for a huge contract. And the Sox have a knack for signing Boras clients, usually for too much money.

While I don’t really like A-Rod as a person (seems like a lot of teammates don’t), he is a sure-fire Hall-of-Famer and possibly the most talented hitter ever. He is the one who will break Barry Bond’s (future) home run record, if he can stay healthy. You don’t pass up an opportunity like this lightly. To get two shots at him is a wonderful stroke of luck. At 30 years old, he is probably better suited to stay at third base than go back to shortstop, as some have suggested. We don’t have anyone in the farm system who will be taking over third base anytime soon, and as much as I like Lowell, he’s going to be 34 soon. Signing him virtually guarantees the lineup’s potency, even after Manny’s contract is up after 2008. And stealing him from the Yanks would feel really good, and make up for the Johnny Damon signing.

So yes, I would sign him. Preferably for six years and not eight. With Josh Beckett having emerged as the staff ace, and Daisuke Matsuzaka right behind him, along with Jon Lester and Clay Buchholz knocking at the door, I say yes. Let’s make some Yankee fans cry.


2 Responses to Would you sign the $30 million man?

  1. donchoi says:

    If (read: When) A-Rod exercises his opt-out, the biggest players in the off-season would likely be Boston, the Angels, the Cubs and possibly the Dodgers. I like those odds, unless Mark Cuban buys the Cubs. If he manages that, he’ll look to make a big splash.

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