I've been making a big effort to stay positive lately, but sometimes it's worth discussing something that's poorly done so that others can do it better. This article by Forbes is an example of baseball analysis that really misses the boat.
The main flaw is that the author compares the salary of each player to the other players at the same position. So if a position is full of overpaid players, nobody will rate as overpaid because they don't earn more than the rest. (Cough cough first base.)
Derek Jeter is cited as an example of an overpaid player, not because his performance isn't worth the money, but because the next highest AL shortstop (evidently we're limited to players in the same league now) earns $4M this year. Uh, isn't that really just a good argument that Orlando Cabrera is underpaid?
The author then argues that the most overpaid players aren't the mediocre guys getting big bucks or the "fading veterans finishing out big contracts". Instead, it's somehow the stars who are the most overpaid. Um, no. A good analysis of overpaid players would compare what each player should earn to what they actually do. And the stars are so much better than the mediocre players that they deserve the huge bucks. Carlos Beltran somehow gets a bad rap in the article when one Beltran is worth 3-4 league average players and earn only about twice as much. And why are we giving aging veterans a pass? I don't even understand the argument behind that one.
Switching gears to the methodology, players were rated by averaging batting average, home runs, runs batted in, and OPS (which the author notes is "now a major metric of production".) By including OPS, the other three metrics are overkill, and last I checked, defense matters. When you argue that Brian Roberts at $8M is one of the worst deals in baseball, you've done something seriously wrong.
Uh, hey, you guys at Forbes, I don't know much about finance, but if your advice in that department is anywhere near as shoddy as your baseball analysis, you've lost me as a potential customer.