On This, of All Days…

 …let’s be thankful for the anti-capitalistic indentured servitude we still have over our young players.

87toppsrussellmartin.jpgAccording to FanGraphs, Russell Martin was worth $21.5 million in 2008. I won’t get into their fancy description of how they arrived at that figure here, but it’s basically a calculation of  how many “wins” he was worth over a replacement player, and then multiplying that number by how much a win is worth. In Martin’s case, even though he slipped a bit from 2007, the fact that there are so few decent catchers out there mean that the replacement level for catchers is pretty low, so that’s why he’s so high. So how much did the Dodgers just sign Martin for, avoiding an arbitration hearing? Only $3.9 million, since Martin had almost no negotiating leverage at all. I’m just going out on a limb here, but I’m thinking that Turtle would get slightly more than that were he available on the open market. That being the case, how about we get him signed up long-term so that we never have to see what his value on that market would be like?

It’s much the same for Jonathan Broxton, who was worth $11.8 million last year according to FanGraphs. For 2009, he gets $1.825 million plus incentives. Think about that: Broxton is getting far less for 2009 than admitted cheat Guillermo Mota just signed with Los Angeles for. Now, I know the situations aren’t really comparable because Mota has earned free agency and Broxton has not. It’s just an insane situation to think about.

This almost evens out the fact that last year, Andruw Jones provided negative $2.4 million worth of production. That almost seems too generous, but then you have to remember that he missed a good portion of the year.

Speaking of indentured servitude, Tony Jackson points out that Jason Repko has been asking for a trade for two years. It’s hard to think an injury-prone outfielder with a .229 career batting average would really have that much to complain about, but I can’t really argue with Repko; if he’s never really going to get a shot in the crowded Los Angeles outfield situation, why not let him go somewhere else? That’s not the notable portion of the story, though – it’s the fact that Jackson claims that Repko, entering his 11th year in the organization, still has two minor league option years left. I’m pretty sure that Jackson made a mistake there (there’s no way that a player who’s appeared in the bigs in three of the last four years has only used up one option year), but if he’s not wrong, that will mean that Repko will have been tied to the Dodgers for twelve years before gaining his independence.