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Why the Rockies should trade Nolan Arenado

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Rockies news and links for Wednesday, December 4, 2019

They shouldn’t, OK? My headline was misleading. I’m sorry.

ESPN made me do it.

Mookie. Lindor. Arenado? Players who will (or should) be in MLB offseason trade talks | ESPN

The arguments:

  • The Rockies should trade Nolan Arenado because he might opt out in two years.
  • Why not trade him?

The article also discusses the Trevor Story situation:

“The notion of the Rockies carrying two $30 million-plus players simultaneously is laughable ... that puts the onus on them to act decisively now, when they have at least some control over how to dictate their future.”

There’s a lot to unpack here, so let’s proceed in a calm, reasonable, unbiased manner.

This is all stupid.

An argument could be made for trading Nolan, but “Because someday he will leave us,” and “Why not?” are not it.

This article also seems to be suggesting that there’s no way the Rockies will sign Story to a long-term deal. The Rockies seem to be suggesting otherwise (paywall).

The Rockies signed Nolan to an eight-year deal last season, and they’re discussing a long-term deal for Trevor Story. So that’s eight future years, at least.

And then there’s the $30 million-plus issue ...

Story’s future takes focus as Rox tender offers | MLB.com

Let’s talk financials.

In 2019, six players made $30 million-plus. Five of those were pitchers, and the sixth was Miguel Cabrera. In 2020, eight players (four position players) are currently slated make $30 million-plus. Sure, a few big-name free agents have yet to sign, but the point remains: $30 million-plus is a lot of money.

So how much would a long-term Trevor Story contract cost the Rockies?

This article mentions Xander Bogaerts as a possible comparison. Last year, Bogaerts signed a six-year, $132 million deal ($22 million average per year) with the Red Sox. Bogaerts is heading into his age 27 season with six full years of service under his belt. Story will also be 27 this year, but has only three full years of service.

I’d also note Alex Bregman’s six-year, $100 million deal ($16.67 million average per year) signed last year. Bregman and Story are the same age with the same service time. (Yes, Bregman plays third, but he came up a shortstop and has gotten some time there in the last few years due to Correa’s injury issues.)

For reference, the top-earning shortstops in 2020:

  1. Xander Bogaerts: $20 million
  2. Francisco Lindor: $16.7 million (projected)
  3. Elvis Andrus: $15.25 million
  4. Brandon Crawford: $15.2 million
  5. Andrelton Simmons: $15 million
  6. Jean Segura: $14.85 million
  7. Marcus Semien: $13.5 million (projected)
  8. [Didi Gregorius: (unsigned) $11.75 in 2019]
  9. Trevor Story: $11.5 million (projected)
  10. Javier Baez: $9.3 million (projected)
  11. Trea Turner: $7.5 million (projected)
  12. Carlos Correa: $7.4 million (projected)
  13. Corey Seager: $7.1 million (projected)
  14. Nick Ahmed: $7 million (projected)

Story, Lindor, Baez, Seager and Correa will all be free agents in 2021.

For all the talk around Trevor Story, the truth is that a decision on his long-term Rockies status may not be imminent. Both Arenado and Blackmon signed in their final arbitration-eligible season, and Story still has two years of arbitration eligibility. So we could be in for at least another year of this never-ending Story.

MLB Trade Rumors: Rockies’ Nolan Arenado Drawing Interest from ‘Multiple Teams’ | Bleacher Report

For those of you who disagreed with my “Don’t trade Trevor Story” take, I have a new one for you:

DON’T TRADE NOLAN ARENADO.

The inside joke at Coors Field that has colored every season since the Rockies drafted Nolan Arenado | The Athletic ($)

The joke is that the Rockies draft a lot of third basemen and then move them to other positions.

(Everybody laughed.)

Is Charlie Blackmon really a trade candidate? | Rox Pile

What do you think?

Poll

Is Charlie Blackmon really a trade candidate?

This poll is closed

  • 24%
    Yes
    (138 votes)
  • 17%
    No
    (102 votes)
  • 11%
    Maybe
    (63 votes)
  • 17%
    No, but he should be
    (101 votes)
  • 18%
    Why is this even a question? We all know the Rockies’ front office doesn’t do trades
    (107 votes)
  • 10%
    All of the above
    (58 votes)
569 votes total Vote Now