June 13, 2024

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Law: The Mets fail to learn from history. Will Edwin Diaz’s deal doom them to repeat it?

The mets They will end up looking for a new home closer or more influential, if they lose Edwin Diaz for free agency. He was baseball’s best loyalist last year, with a War 3 rating two ways in both major locations, and his FIP of 0.90 was the fourth lowest this century for any pitcher with at least 50 IP. It is a nice. The The Mets decided to give him five years and $100 million It is anything but.

Diaz’s season has been amazing, but the loyalists who do it don’t repeat it. The three players with a FIP lower than Díaz all saw them rise during a full round the following year. Eric Ghane has never come close to this level of dominance again. Aroldis Chapman It was still elite, not quite as much in its prime season, for the next two years and then dropped to just above average. Third, Craig KimbrelI did it again, five years later, and then headed over the cliff.

This century’s best off-season list is full of good shooters who have had their best years and never seen before, as well as some flash-in-the-ban. Almost no one has done anything close to this kind of performance for more than three years in a row. Even those who got three years in a row did so before free agency.

Only five shooters in this millennium have thrown at least 50 rounds with less than a 2.5 FIP in four or five straight years: Kimbrel in 2011-14, Greg Holland in 2011-14, Kenley Jansen In 2013-17, Chapman in 2012-16 and Andrew Miller in 2014-17. (Pedro Martinez did that too, if you need more reasons to worship at that altar.) Miller is the only one of those who has done any during the years covered by his free agent contract. Everything was dramatically worse in the five years since those outstanding races.

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In this century, there were, by my count, 20 four- or five-year contracts handed over to free agent mitigators, not counting Díaz’s New Deal. Jansen, Chapman and BJ Ryan get deals for five years, the rest for four years. One of the deals, Raisel Iglesias, is still in progress with 1.6 WAR in year one – although most of that came after the team that signed him, AngelsThey gave up on him and the contract in Atlanta halfway through the first year. Jansen’s and Chapman immediately followed the end of the five-year periods I mentioned above.

Of the other 19, nine resulted in 4 or fewer bowler wars over the course of the deal, regardless of the difference. This includes Brett Cecil (minus 0.5) and Justin Spear (0.8) Drew Pomerans (1.8, out all year three due to injury), and Scott Linebrink (1.8). Only three deals resulted in an average of at least 2 wars: the Kimbrel deal originally signed with PadresMiller dealt with Yankees And Mariano Rivera contracted from 2001 to 2004. This Rivera deal is the only four- or five-year contract awarded to a loyalist who has produced at least 10 War Wars over the course of the deal. One out of 19, and it belongs in the greatest short dwell the game has ever seen. Do you feel lucky? I’m sure not.

I’m thrilled with Diaz, whose path to riches wasn’t straight: he failed as a starter in the palace, moved on to the pen, exploded on big business, and went to the Mets in a trade that many people (for reasons unrelated to him) derided (for reasons that had nothing to do with him) and then was A miserable first season in Queens. He was the best savior in baseball this year, and was slated to be the best savior available in the free agency so far. We can certainly look at this as a late payment for the years he was paid very low due to baseball’s regressive salary structure. It’s great for him.

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But for the Mets, that’s the kind of wasteful spending he’s supposed to avoid. All of modern baseball history says that this deal wouldn’t work out for them. There’s a 25 percent chance that the deal will be disastrous, which gives Diaz some credit for being a better year for his platform than most relief shooters who’ve received four- or five-year deals at free agency before, despite deals for Jansen (five years, 6.4 war), Billy Wagner (four years, 5.3 war, just 0.1 last year), and Chapman (five years, 6 war) did not do well for the signing clubs, with Jansen and Chapman both falling off five-year stints of performing Elite and consistent workloads. Wagner’s deal was with the same franchise.

I suppose everyone wants to think this time will be different. I just don’t think looking at history is a good business. The basic rate of diluents is that they don’t last – when offered over a four-year period, they either tarnish, lose effectiveness, or both. As much as I enjoy watching Diaz Stadium, I see no reason to believe it is an exception to one of the clearest base fares in our sport. More loyalists should be paid at their peak, but four-year deals for free agent attenuators are our riskiest investment.

(Photo: Franklin II/The Associated Press)