Baseball and Economics

Some semi-serious, and seriously half-baked, thoughts about baseball and money.

You have been judged, and found wanting.

Jayson Werth, who will turn 32 in May, just signed a 7-year deal with the Nats worth 630 million Wendy’s chicken nuggets. That’s 126 million of your earth our American dollars. Werth seems like a nice guy, and the kind of utilitarian, scrappy, everyman kind of player that gets Peter Gammons harder than viagra.

Jayson’s career statistics are nice, but not gaudy. In the three years he’s been a starter for Philly he’s done well, but he also was playing in a modern murder’s row, with Utley, Howard, Ibanez, Ruiz, and Victorino. The Nats overpaid, but they also have to overpay anyone to come to D.C. I think the main impact of this signing will be on other teams, because suddenly the Nats suckitude distorts the market for free agents.

You are a worthless piece of human garbage, sir. No, not you, Terrell.

If Ben Bernake wanted to really do something productive, he should back off QE2. Instead, he could use some of Obama’s unconstitutional double-secret probation assassination powers, and take out Drew Rosenhaus, the agent who brokered this ‘deal’. He’s a monster who must be stopped.

In other Washington news, Tom Bridge from We Love DC tweeted this morning that he’s alternately thrilled and terrified that the Nats are “throwing buckets of money at Cliff Lee“. I find that odd, given how uncritical he was of Werth’s deal.

Cliff Lee is certainly the best free agent pitcher available, and possibly the best pitcher in baseball, period. The Nats problem is, has been, and seems likely to always be, pitching. Teaming up Cliff Lee and Steven Strasburg seems like a no-brainer. Then again, the Nats have never been a brain-trust. I hope the Nats go big on Lee. That would give them a solid one-two punch, and the Werth deal becomes merely bad, not outrageous. Very much like the Celtics signing Ray Lewis, which seemed atrocious before they also acquired KG. That worked out well.

But in another respect, wtf baseball. Spending $126 million on a player who is best described as “complimentary” isn’t smart. But in Washington you can justify paying almost a million dollars each for jobs in the monopolistic and wasteful sugar industry. Jayson Werth should feel right at home.

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