Nick Swisher, $126 Million Man And Other MLBullets

Nick Swisher could be in line for a huge payday this offseason. (Photo by Brian Kersey/Getty Images)

The latest from around the League ...

  • Jon Heyman yesterday wondered whether Nick Swisher, an impending free agent, might challenge Jayson Werth's 7-year, $126 million contract in free agency. At first blush, the suggestion is laughable (and, indeed, at least one executive Heyman asked did laugh). But Heyman looks at some superficial data - their ages are the same upon reaching free agency, their career OPS and WAR line up decently at the time of free agency - and suggests that the idea isn't all that laughable. Without studying the numbers, something still rung hollow to me. So, I studied the numbers, and the most glaring problem with Heyman's suggestion is that, while Swisher has consistently been solid throughout his career, Werth's trajectory was pointing solidly up when he reached free agency. His three season before free agency were considerably better than Swisher's in the OBP and SLG department, and that's without considering the fact that Werth had always had more defensive versatility (he could play effective center field), more speed, and a much better batting average. Dave Cameron at FanGraphs took up the argument, and came to the same conclusion: Swisher isn't in Werth's league at the time of free agency. Further, it's not like most folks think the Werth contract was sane. Swisher would be better served pushing for a deal similar to, or slightly better than, the one the Dodgers gave Andre Ethier, with whom he compares favorably. The Melky Cabrera suspension probably got Swisher some extra cash, too.

Brett Taylor is the Lead Writer at Bleacher Nation, and a Contributor here at Bleed Cubbie Blue.

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