From Hal McCoy:

Weathers and the Reds have agreed to a one-year contract for this year, with a club option for 2010.

Weathers, 39 and a free agent after last season, opted to accept arbitration with the Reds when he didn’t sign with another team.

Weathers, who was paid $3.3 million last year, was offered $3 million for 2009 by the Reds and he submitted an arbitration figure for $4.6 million.

The two parties compromised for $4 million.

I think Weathers is overpaid at $4M and I’m sure there’s a buyout for the second year of the contract. Let’s hope the Reds make use of the buyout.

49 Responses

  1. Y-City Jim

    Not smart use of money. If the team miraculously contends I might feel differently but for a middle reliever for a 5th or 6th place team its a waste of resources as well as depriving a young pitcher of some valuable experience.

  2. Chad

    $400,000 buyout for the second year, from what I’ve heard.

    Waste of money, and it’s probably going to cause me to have an aneurysm in 2009.

  3. CeeKeR

    Not the worst thing ever, but it’s yet another “signing” that doesn’t really help the team have a chance of winning… Weathers has been a good/decent picture for a long time…but he can’t hit – and his abilities can’t possibly be worth 3.5 million more than a league minimum guy out of the minors…especially on a team that seems to have little to no chance of competing.

  4. Glenn

    While I’ll agree Weathers is not a difference maker, my guess is 4 mil is about the going rate for a guy with his stats and years of service.

  5. KY Chip

    The official Reds website is reporting the deal is for $3.5m base salary with $700k in incentives based on games finished. The team option second year of the deal is for $3.7m and carries a $400k buy-out.

    I think $3.5m/yr is a complete waste of money when you consider you’ve got Burton, Bray, and Rhodes who are all going to do the same job as Weathers — late-inning short work and set-up for Cordero. I can’t imagine that Masset, Roenicke, or Ramirez couldn’t have filled the same role for much less money.

    And like Chad, put me in line for a Weathers-induced aneurysm sometime this year.

  6. Josh

    The money sucks but isn’t this what everyone expected? Everyone seemed to agree that offering him arbitration was the way to go (not thinking, of course, that he’d accept.) Given those circumstances, they could have (and probably would have) ended up paying him more if they didn’t settle. It sure does suck, but its what they had to do, right?

  7. David

    I’m going to agree with Josh on this one. The end result might not be what fans might be hoping, but the Reds played this the right way.

    It’s a one year deal and you have to figure the Reds had this in their budget and that it did not have an impact on other signings.

  8. GregD

    Seeing that this is about what Affeldt signed with the Giants, who would you rather have for those $$ Weathers Affeldt?

  9. Phill

    Weathers is basically signed for only a bit more than he was paid last year. I don’t have a problem with it to be honest. It’s better than what would’ve happened had they gone through the process.

    CAN Roenicke, Masset and whoever else is vying for the last of the bullpen slots do as well or better than Weathers has the last few years? I’m not going to act like Dave Weathers is the best because quite frankly I don’t like to see him on the mound if the game is even remotely close but he hasn’t been abysmal or any thing.

    Would I rather have Dave Weathers at 3.7M+400K buyout or Affeldt for 8M over 2 years? I’ll take Weathers. While Affeldt was really good for the Reds last year and good for the Rockies the year prior those are his only two good years in his rather short career. I know it isn’t exactly fair to single out his first 4 years as he was fluxing between a starter and a reliever but Weathers has given the Reds solid results since he signed in 05. It’s only a one year deal. That’s what I think we need to focus on. For once we have an aged relief pitcher that isn’t on a multiyear contract.

    Also with Affeldt gone it opens doors for Bill Bray who had a great season in 08.

  10. GRF

    I am not sure that Affeldt and Bray are mutually exclusive, and given age, usage, difficulty of finding LHP and potential ability to start I would take Affeldt in a hearbeat if the money was the same. That having been said, it is not clear that Affeldt would resign with us, and while I don’t like the money, I tend to agree taking the chance on offering him arbitration was probably worth it. The only downside is if the money really did/does preclude another move (like say having made a better offer for Burrell) but at this point I am so confused about what the gameplan is I am not sure that is the case.

  11. KY Chip

    Some math problems for you:

    #1. (Weathers for $3.5m) + (Rhodes for $2m) = $5.5m for this year alone.

    #2. (Weathers buyout of $400k) + (Rhodes for $2m) = $2.4m for next year.

    #3. $5.5m + $2.4m = $7.9m over the next two years.

    Affeldt signed with the Giants for $8m over the next two years.

    I’m not saying that Affeldt would’ve re-signed with the Reds, but there can be no argument made that the money wasn’t there to afford him.

    And for the record, I, too, would rather have Affeldt and a young RHP than Weathers and Rhodes in the pen. I’m 39 and anyone older than me not named Nolan Ryan or Satchel Paige should not be pitching in the majors.

  12. preach

    “but at this point I am so confused about what the gameplan is I am not sure that is the case.”

    kinda sums it up for me…..

  13. Chris

    Off-season Gameplan: Do a bunch of stuff.

    In-season Gameplan: HAVOC!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  14. Chris

    Affeldt is 29, and pitched very, very well the past two seasons in relief.

    Weathers is 39, and has pitched pretty well for the past three. He doesn’t strike anyone out, and allowed 13.5 baserunners every 9 IP last year.

    Pretending they’re of equal value is off base.

  15. CeeKeR

    Of course, the Reds got two pitchers for the same money as one Affeldt. For small market teams, it’s better to “spread the wealth” as opposed to having all your money invested in one player…especially in case of injury. Now, the money with the relievers is relatively small, but still, I can’t necessarily fault this decision. (There are plenty of other decisions, however, that I can fault…eesh this offseason has been rough.)

  16. brublejr

    Weathers is very very overpaid. He was lucky to have the 3 mil now it’s 4 mil. He must have held them up to get that much for an old releif pitcher.

    So let me get this straight…the Reds cannot afford a big bat LF, but can afford 2 releif pitchers making 16 mil this year? Mis-use of funding to say the least. Compare that to the Mets with their closer and set-up man making around 20 mil. Who would rather have Coco and Stormy at 16 mil or K-Rod and Putz for 20 mil?

    Best case sernario for this one is that a contender needs a set-up guy and are desperate and the Reds unload Weathers for anything.

  17. per14

    Middle to late-inning relievers are like backup running backs. It’s not hard to find a decent one for cheap. I’ve nothing against Weathers and I wish him well, but he’s not a right fit for the Reds at that dollar amount.

    What really annoys me is that Burton belongs in the 8th inning, but with Weathers on the roster, Baker will make Weathers the 8th inning guy.

  18. Mark in CC

    Affeldt still wants a chance to start. That wasn’t going to happen here so he moved on. His choice and he made it quickly to everyones suprise. He probably won’t start in SF either but he again wanted the chance. And, if Weathers is too high for $4 Mill then Affeldt was way to high for a situational lefty.

    Bullpen became a strength in ’09. It looks like it will be again.

    Everyone wants to talk about chemistry and leadership being so valuable. From the way the young guys talk Dave is a leader among the pitchers and in the lockerroom for the rest of the team.

    Dave played it correctly. Good for him and although it doesn’t improve the team it keeps a strength a strength.

  19. Y-City Jim

    Imagine being a Yankee or Red Sox fan and never having to complain about how much they signed a ball player for since the vault is overflowing.

  20. Dan

    Weathers is my leading candidate for a DFA this year at this point. I hope I’m wrong, but the Reds have a bad track record of trying to hang onto almost-40-year-old reliever for a year or two too long.

    His peripheral numbers last year already include some warning signs – lots of hits, not many K’s.

    And not that this matters… but Affeldt is FAR better than Weathers. He’s younger, more dominating, and he is NOT a situational lefty. Check out Affeldt’s career splits — he’s basically equally effective vs. RHB’s and LHB’s.

  21. Dan

    Oh, but all that said about Weathers, I think I would’ve offered him arbitration too. I would’ve been hoping for the “sandwich pick” rather than hoping for him to accept, but it seemed like a risk worth taking at the time.

    The market has changed in the couple of months since arbitration was offered. Frankly, I think the Reds did the right thing by offering it, and it sure looks like Weathers did the right thing (for himself) by accepting.

    I’m not sure he’d get more than $1 million or $1.5 million on the open market right now.

  22. NickP

    Maybe we’ll be able to trade him at the deadline.

    Doubtful, of course.

    Terrible waste of resources.

  23. Mr. Redlegs

    You can’t have it both ways. If they let Weathers walk, they get nothing in return. They offer arbitration because they can get a sandwich pick. Fine. Then the market tanks and to most everyone’s surprise Stormy accepts arb. That’s the gamble you take. Diamondbacks gambled to not offer Dunn arbitration and bypass the free pick, and look what that could have cost them if he accepted.

    Stormy’s deal is right in line with these relievers with his numbers over the past three years. That’s what he was going to get paid once he accepted arb.

    So they had two choices: let him walk or offer arb. They’re no worse (yet) for the decision but certainly I would have preferred to see some of the youngsters who get bumped from the No. 5 slot fall into a relief role. But meh. That’s not making or breaking this team.

  24. GregD

    “Stormy’s deal is right in line with these relievers with his numbers over the past three years.”

    You’ve said this multiple times without responding to “WHO”. Who (non-closers) makes $4 million a year in the bullpen?

    $4 million makes him one of the highest setup relievers in the majors, especially when you consider where he would rank amongst MLB 8th inning relievers (I’d expect him to not be in the top 10).

  25. GregD

    “I would have preferred to see some of the youngsters who get bumped from the No. 5 slot fall into a relief role. ”

    Me too. It probably doesn’t impact the 2009 team, but it could have had an important role in shaping the 2010 bullpen. I envisioned Thompson as a solid setup man/eventual closer type.

  26. Jared

    I’m surprised at all the in depth analysis of this move. I thought Weathers was uniformly hated, and I for one wouldn’t want him in our system if he was playing for free. He’s had his points when he was useful, but now he’s just a loser. He gives games away and looks like he’s going to even when he doesn’t.

  27. David

    Affeldt and Weathers is a bit like mixing apples and oranges given Affeldt was a LHP. Every bullpen needs a balance, and I’m not sure the RH market was overly impressive this year. So losing Affeldt has less of an impact as losing Weathers. The bullpen was 2nd in the NL last year and it is important to keep that group together as much as possible.

  28. GregD

    “The bullpen was 2nd in the NL last year and it is important to keep that group together as much as possible.”
    So, they’re bringing Majewski back?

  29. Steve Price

    Earl Weaver would bring his future starters to the majors and have them pitch in relief for a year…short and long relief to get used to the majors.

    May be we could bring up some of our 25-26 year old prospects and do the same?

  30. preach

    This is depressing. Not because of Weathers so much as this is probably the last off-season move for the Reds.

  31. per14

    Think Joe Crede would have signed for 4 million? I bet he would have. Play him at 3rd, put EdE in left. Platoon Dickerson and Taveras in CF. Yes, I realize none of that would have happened, but it’s a better way to spend this money.

  32. David

    “So, they’re bringing Majewski back?”

    Well…

  33. KY Chip

    “This is depressing. Not because of Weathers so much as this is probably the last off-season move for the Reds.”

    There’s still the possibility of working a deal with E5 before his case goes to arbitration. THAT would be the last off-season move.

  34. Chris

    “Everyone wants to talk about chemistry and leadership being so valuable.”

    I don’t. 🙂

  35. Mr. Redlegs

    “You’ve said this multiple times without responding to “WHO”. Who (non-closers) makes $4 million a year in the bullpen?”

    These people, that’s who—the ones that set the salary table for setup guys with results or experience close to Weathers:

    Affeldt, $8 mil over 2 years
    Howry, $12m over 3 in just completed contract with Cubs
    Bradford, 10.5m over 3
    Wheeler, 10.5m over 3
    Walker, $12m over 3
    Romero, $12m over 3
    Linebrink, $19m over 4
    Dotel, $11m over 2
    Putz, $13m over 3
    Speier, $18m over 4
    Hawkins, $3.5m mil over 1
    Downs, $10m over 3
    Schoeneweis, $10.8m over 3
    Marte, $12m over 3
    Soriano, $9m over 2
    Gonzalez, $3.45m over 1
    Mahay, $8m over 2
    Farnsworth, $9.25m over 2
    Riske, $13 over 3

  36. GregD

    Affeldt, Marte, and Mahay. 3 good left-handed relievers that aren’t specialists (i.e. they can get both lh and rh batters out.) Those type of pitchers always are a premium over their rh counterparts. Each of those guys are on contracts of $4M per year. That is too much for Weathers.

    Bob Howry, signed a 1 year deal this offseason with the Giants for $2.75.

    A lot of the other guys on your list are closers (Putz, Dotel), 10 years younger, and/or much better than Weathers.

    Even with that, $4M for Weathers makes him one of the highest non-closer in the majors. Weathers is 39 and coming off a year where he allowed 109 baserunners in 69 innings. That is too much for Weathers.

    ESPN.com, stats, pitchers age 35+, 2008, as reliever
    Some comps of guys who had similar workloads/similar stats:
    Hawkins, 36, $3.5M
    Brocail, 41, $2.75M
    Mahay, 37, lhp, $4M/yr for 2 years
    Park, 35, $2.5M
    Howry, 35, $2.75M
    Oliver, 38, lhp, $3.655M
    Franklin, 36, $2.5M/yr for 2 years

  37. Mr. Redlegs

    Wrong, you selectively picked guys who fit your incorrect rant. Age has little to do with the arb charts. It’s three consecutive years of stats in their roles.

    Besides, Putz is setup for K-Rod in New York, Dotel is setup for Jinks with the White Sox. The three lefthanders—Affeldt, Marte and Mahay—signed for almost identical money because that’s where the arb tables slotted them, based on role and past performance.

    And Weathers makes $3.5 million in 2009, not $4 mil. Is he worth it? Nah. But once it went to arbitration, that’s exactly the ballpark he was going to be paid—said time and again, proven once and for all.

  38. GregD

    Well, I think you’re trying to pick an argument against something I never said. I’m not arguing whether the arbitration figures and settlement is appropriate within the rules of the arbitration process. (except on your list, Putz has been a closer the past three years.)

    I’m saying the Reds overpaid for a 39-yr-old rh reliever. It seems on that we agree.

    $3.5 million base
    + $700k in incentives based on games finished
    + $400k 2010 option buyout or $3.7M 2010 salary

    So who knows what his final salary will actually be. I figured he either hits his incentives and they pick up the option or he doesn’t hit his incentives and they buy out his option.

  39. Phill

    I just hope that Weathers can provide some HAVOC on the mound.

  40. Mr. Redlegs

    “Well, I think you’re trying to pick an argument against something I never said.”

    I’m not picking an argument. You asked for relievers like Weathers who make that kind of money in a tone as if none existed; you were given a list of players who are his arb comps, you disputed some of them under the premise of age and/or innings, you were corrected.

    You have an opinion of Weathers based on perceptive value. That, I understand. Unfortunately, agents, the players union and the arb process disagrees. I was fairly expressive on several blogs that once the Reds and Weathers exchanged figures Stormy was going to either win his case or settle at around $3.5-$3.75 million. History rarely lies when it comes to arbitration.

    Also: Teams will generally budget for some area of “likely” incentives to be earned but for the most part those monies are not counted toward annual salary until they are earned. Buyout monies generally go on the next year’s budget, thus “dead monies.”

  41. GregD

    If you get it, why are you going on and on about arbitration appropriate salary?

  42. RiverCity Redleg

    The fact is, Stormy pitched in more games than anyone but Affeldt last year with a better ERA. Amongst the regular relievers, only Burton had a better ERA and he pitched much fewer games and innings. I agree that he always seems to make it interesting while he’s on the mound but the bottom line is that he’s still getting it done and by all accounts is a great presence in the clubhouse.

  43. Mr. Redlegs

    “If you get it, why are you going on and on about arbitration appropriate salary?”

    Because apparently you don’t. Talk about picking an argument. Ugh.

  44. Chris

    He was not getting it done. He was getting lucky, in that he’d give up 2 runs with a 3 run lead, or load the bases and Cordero saved his bacon, etc.

  45. GregD

    I don’t get my own point? In the broader sense, the Reds overspend in the wrong areas, then cry foul that they can’t participate in the free agent market to fill their needs. That’s the problem with the Reds limited budget paying premium dollar for average relief pitchers.

  46. Bill

    I agree with this, but the Reds gambled on this and lost….I think that’s the point. They thought he wouldn’t accept arbitration and they’d walk away with a draft pick; they were wrong and he took it and they were stuck and got the best deal they could get.

  47. GregD

    That they were hoping for a draft pick has only been internet conjecture, right?

  48. Bill

    Sure, but that’s the only thing that makes sense to me…