The Marlins offered second baseman Dan Uggla a four-year, $48 million extension, according to major league sources.
Needless to say, the team's stunned Uggla didn't accept. --- The Marlins' frustration with their inability to lock up Uggla is understandable; they offered him the highest average annual salary in club history. A fifth-year vesting option could bridge the gap — if he indeed wants to stay. If not, he potentially could enter the market next offseason as the only second baseman with five 30-homer seasons.
Wow. Is it a fair offer? Yes. Could it had been for a little more? Of course, but it wouldn't have mattered.
Danny and his agent were looking for a five-year deal, or so they say. A fifth year option, should the Marlins offer it, will just be a carrot tied to a stick. Enticement if you will. But it won't work. Uggla and his agent know how the Marlins backend load contracts, and any increase in the amount of time via an option will allow the front office to place a lot of the money in a manner so they could decline it, thus making sure Danny didn't get full contract value and therefore saving a bunch of money.
If it is all about money, which I don't think it is, I never begrudge a player for trying to get all they feel they are worth. The career of a baseball player, in most cases, is very short. And if he feels he can extract more money from the game, then I hope he does. I have never gone to a game to watch an owner sit in his luxury suite.
But I don't think this about money. Oh, sure, that is a part of it, but I think Danny is tired of playing for the Marlins front office. The Marlins gave away his best friend, Cody Ross, and he doesn't want to play here anymore. Will he dog it next season? Heck no. He has something to prove to the other 29 clubs. Giving away Cody was understandable in the sense the Marlins front office were dealing from a very weak position. The Marlins didn't plan to bring him back and the Giants really didn't want him. So the deal went something like, Giants: There is no trade, pull him back or give him to us. Either way they win. Marlins: Just take him, it will save us some money.
But doing so had some blowback, and we are seeing it today.
So where do we go from here? The Marlins will take Danny to arbitration and then entertain offers for him all year long. Whether he is traded in this offseason or during next season, or if they just allow him to walk remains to be seen. But bottom line here is Danny won't be with the Marlins after 2011.
Oh, don't be surprised if he signs a four-year $48 million deal with his next club. Actually, if he does, that would be a pretty sweet deal for him.
Should we be sad about this? Yeah. Losing Danny, a fan favorite, will be tough. But it is what he wants, which I completely understand. The upside to it, if there is a short run upside, is that it clears the way for some of the young ones to get some very needed playing time. However, when the trade or walk away happens, his replacement will not put up the production Danny did at the plate.
As with everything, I could be wrong. But I don't think I am.