It figures that it would come about five minutes after I publish a season in review piece, but there’s real actual news to attend to: the Pirates have signed Rod Barajas to a one-year deal with a club option for 2013. This is mildly surprising since Barajas had made it clear how much he enjoyed playing with his hometown team and the Dodgers certainly have a need; such is the life of the mediocre veteran catcher, I suppose, as Barajas will now be joining his sixth club in fourteen MLB seasons. That said, Yahoo’s Tim Brown points out the shocking contract numbers:
Source: Barajas terms with Bucs: $4 million in ’12, $3.5-milllion club option in ’13.
Remember the other day when I looked at the contracts for Willie Bloomquist, Chien-Ming Wang, and Juan Rivera, and worried that this was going to be a completely insane winter? Yeah, you can add that to the list, because, wow. Four million for Rod Barajas!
Not that I’m sad, of course; Barajas’s power was welcome, but it usually came in one red-hot spurt a year, leaving five months of an icy cold, low-OBP wasteland. You remember that I wasn’t happy about giving him $3.25m last winter, so there’s absolutely no way the Dodgers should have matched this – if they even had the chance. (And condolences to any Pirates fans who might be reading, because, damn.) And, as Eric Stephen of TrueBlueLA points out, the Dodgers get a compensation pick because Barajas was a Type B free agent. So no hard feelings here, though the Dodgers still absolutely have to get a veteran catcher to join A.J. Ellis & Tim Federowicz, likely someone in the Gerald Laird / Matt Treanor mold of the International Brotherhood of Backup Catchers.
Barajas will still be in Dodger Stadium for the home opener, if only because the Pirates are in town, but if there is one regret here, it’s that we might never get to see Barajas and Dee Gordon do whatever the hell this was again: