Red Sox: 2017 offseason BSI round table discussion

PHOENIX, AZ - SEPTEMBER 24: Giancarlo Stanton
PHOENIX, AZ - SEPTEMBER 24: Giancarlo Stanton /
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PHOENIX, AZ – OCTOBER 04: J.D. Martinez (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
PHOENIX, AZ – OCTOBER 04: J.D. Martinez (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

Is J.D Martinez worth the $200 million contract he’s rumored to be seeking?

Sean: Is he worth it? Not when you consider that his poor defensive skills limit his value. If he transitions into a full-time DH at any point over the course of that contract then the price tag will seem even more outrageous. That being said, any team willing to explore the top-tier options on the free agent market has to be willing to overpay. Martinez would provide a quick fix to Boston’s offensive struggles, so they may be willing to pull the trigger even if his contract won’t turn out to be a good value. Still, $200 million is too high. That assumes an 8-year contract, which is too long for the 30-year old Martinez. The average annual value is about right though. I would go $23 million per year over six years, which would be $138 million. He would be worth that price. A bidding war will almost certainly push it higher. The Red Sox should be willing to overpay to some extent but if the price soars beyond $175 then they should pivot in another direction.

Rick: A few years ago my wife was stunned that a neighborhood house was on the market for $350,000.  Why? Other similar homes had sold for much less.  I told her you can ask anything you want, but getting it is another issue. The home sold for $288,000. Maybe Boras was the original listing broker?  Martinez is asking high and see what transpires. Martinez is Manny-Lite since he can hit, but not like Manny Ramirez. I can see him getting Hanley Ramirez money but for a few more years tacked on.

Josh: In today’s market, in which contracts worth north of $200 million no longer seem out of the ordinary, a player of J.D. Martinez’s caliber is absolutely worth it. While one might point out that Martinez’s career year in 2017 saw him hit almost 20 points above his career average, the counter to that argument is that two bad years at the beginning of his career weigh down his lifetime numbers. He finished with an average of .303 or better in three of six full seasons, and an OPS of .908 or better in three seasons. While last season was the first in which he topped 40 home runs and just the second in which he drove in more than 100 runs, it was also the first time he found himself part of a competent offense. Even the greatest hitters need protection around them in the lineup. The fact that Martinez hit 38 homers and recorded 102 RBI on an atrocious Detroit Tigers team in 2015 speaks volumes about his talent as a hitter. Martinez is worth $200 million, and the Red Sox shouldn’t hesitate to give it to him.

Jake: No. Martinez is one of the best hitters in baseball, but a piece of that value is eaten away by his defensive deficiency. The guy had a 1.066 OPS and that still only netted a 4.1 WAR. We don’t know if he can replicate those offensive numbers over a full season again, and that value isn’t worth $200 million. Now age 30, I wouldn’t give Martinez more than six years, and I think $25-$27 milion annually is a fair estimate. So six years, $162 million is as high as I go.

Bryson:  I do not think JD Martinez is worth $200 million, and I don’t think the Red Sox should be willing to pay it either. His 2017 OPS was over 140 points higher than his previous career high. He hit a career high in home runs, and only hit 30+ homers for the second time in his career. The Red Sox are looking for a perennial 30+ home run hitter this offseason. Martinez had a career season in a walk year, something that isn’t likely to be replicated. If the Sox can get him around $150 million, then it is time to talk