wSalary (part 3): Best and Worst Valued Contracts of 2012

Christian Petersen

Using wSalary as a descriptive tool (as opposed to a predictive one), we single out the best- and worst- valued contracts of the 2012 season.

In the third installment of the wSalary series, we will take a retrospective look at the best valued contracts of the 2012 season.

In order to do this, we have to tweak the wSalary formula to be descriptive rather than predictive, so that we can look back on last season and describe the value rather than predict the 2013 total, like we did here last week.

Formula

The formula takes into account the 2012 salary and the WAR*$/WAR weighted. The sum is added up and scaled by the data-set's correlation to the actual season salary:

The $/WAR for this data-set includes all players with at least 150 PA which is around $2,636,972, significantly higher than the $/WAR that we used in previous models for qualified batters. The reason being is that platoon players have become more prevalent in the game leading to higher salaries -- paying for two players to fill one role costs more than a single starter. It is also worth noting that the 2012 season had the least amount of qualified players (min. 3.1 PA/game) since 1996.

Taking the above into account, we will attempt to quantify 2012 wSalary with the following formula:

0.85*(2012 Salary+(WAR*$/WAR)*0.628)

With this model, we can find the difference between 2012 wSalary and actual 2012 salary, which we will call (+/-) dValue. In short, wSalary - Salary = dValue.

Top 25

Num Name Age 2012 WAR 2012 Salary 2012 wSalary dValue
1 Buster Posey 25 8 $615,000.00 $11,819,556.76 $11,204,556.76
2 Andrew McCutchen 25 7.4 $708,333.00 $11,051,630.50 $10,343,297.50
3 Ryan Braun 28 7.9 $7,111,111.00 $17,200,043.13 $10,088,932.13
4 Chase Headley 28 7.5 $3,475,000.00 $13,544,509.24 $10,069,509.24
5 Jason Heyward 22 6.6 $565,000.00 $9,800,116.45 $9,235,116.45
6 Robinson Cano 29 7.8 $14,000,000.00 $22,914,389.54 $8,914,389.54
7 David Wright 29 7.8 $15,250,000.00 $23,976,889.54 $8,726,889.54
8 Aramis Ramirez 34 6.5 $6,000,000.00 $14,278,664.22 $8,278,664.22
9 Yadier Molina 29 6.5 $7,000,000.00 $15,128,661.03 $8,128,661.03
10 Michael Bourn 29 6.4 $6,845,000.00 $14,855,701.14 $8,010,701.14
11 Aaron Hill 30 6.2 $5,500,000.00 $13,430,032.01 $7,930,032.01
12 Austin Jackson 25 5.5 $500,000.00 $8,191,559.63 $7,691,559.63
13 Ben Zobrist 31 5.9 $4,687,300.00 $12,315,607.99 $7,628,307.99
14 Martin Prado 28 5.9 $4,750,000.00 $12,368,901.08 $7,618,901.08
15 Alex Gordon 28 5.9 $4,775,000.00 $12,390,151.08 $7,615,151.08
16 Ian Desmond 26 5.4 $512,500.00 $8,060,975.38 $7,548,475.38
17 Carlos Ruiz 33 5.5 $3,700,000.00 $10,911,564.73 $7,211,564.73
18 Adrian Beltre 33 6.5 $15,000,000.00 $21,928,663.58 $6,928,663.58
19 Miguel Cabrera 29 7.1 $21,000,000.00 $27,875,920.34 $6,875,920.34
20 Joey Votto 28 5.9 $11,410,655.00 $18,030,457.83 $6,619,802.83
21 Miguel Montero 28 5 $5,900,000.00 $12,075,512.11 $6,175,512.11
22 Angel Pagan 30 4.8 $4,850,000.00 $10,900,593.62 $6,050,593.62
23 Matt Wieters 26 4.1 $500,000.00 $6,214,621.87 $5,714,621.87
24 Jon Jay 27 4.1 $504,000.00 $6,218,022.51 $5,714,022.51
25 David Freese 29 4.1 $508,000.00 $6,221,423.78 $5,713,423.78

Bottom 25

Num Name Age WAR 2012 Salary 2012 wSalary dValue
1 Ryan Howard 32 -1 $20,000,000.00 $15,587,921.55 -$4,412,078.45
2 Michael Young 35 -1.4 $16,174,974.00 $11,771,811.82 -$4,403,162.18
3 Jason Bay 33 -0.8 $18,125,000.00 $14,276,591.96 -$3,848,408.04
4 Chone Figgins 34 -1 $9,500,000.00 $6,662,922.82 -$2,837,077.18
5 Vernon Wells 33 0.6 $24,187,500.00 $21,406,655.35 -$2,780,844.65
6 Jeff Francoeur 28 -1.2 $6,750,000.00 $4,042,999.23 -$2,707,000.77
7 Ryan Raburn 31 -1.5 $2,100,000.00 -$333,128.52 -$2,433,128.52
8 Carlos Lee 36 0.3 $19,000,000.00 $16,573,652.61 -$2,426,347.39
9 Marlon Byrd 34 -1 $6,500,000.00 $4,112,922.82 -$2,387,077.18
10 Delmon Young 26 -0.7 $6,750,000.00 $4,749,047.38 -$2,000,952.62
11 Brennan Boesch 27 -1.3 $502,500.00 -$1,408,586.30 -$1,911,086.30
12 Greg Dobbs 33 -1.1 $1,400,000.00 -$363,287.70 -$1,763,287.70
13 Juan Rivera 33 -0.8 $4,000,000.00 $2,270,341.96 -$1,729,658.04
14 Wilson Valdez 34 -1.1 $930,000.00 -$762,787.06 -$1,692,787.06
15 Lucas Duda 26 -1.1 $497,318.00 -$1,130,571.86 -$1,627,889.86
16 Ty Wigginton 34 -0.7 $4,000,000.00 $2,411,552.48 -$1,588,447.52
17 Miguel Cairo 38 -1 $1,000,000.00 -$562,074.63 -$1,562,074.63
18 Danny Valencia 27 -1 $515,000.00 -$974,331.64 -$1,489,331.64
19 Yuniesky Betancourt 30 -0.8 $2,000,000.00 $570,340.04 -$1,429,659.96
20 Alex Rodriguez 36 2.2 $30,000,000.00 $28,606,640.43 -$1,393,359.58
21 Ramon Hernandez 36 -0.6 $3,200,000.00 $1,872,763.64 -$1,327,236.36
22 Brent Lillibridge 28 -0.8 $500,000.00 -$704,661.23 -$1,204,661.23
23 Stephen Drew 29 0.0 $7,750,000.00 $6,587,518.49 -$1,162,481.51
24 Franklin Gutierrez 29 -0.2 $5,812,500.00 $4,658,223.72 -$1,154,276.28
25 Orlando Hudson 34 -0.2 $5,500,000.00 $4,392,601.91 -$1,107,398.10

No surprise, Posey represents the player who provided the most value to his team in context to what the Giants paid for him. An MVP, a World Series championship, and an 8 WAR season all on a $615,000 contract! It does not take a mathematical formula to look at Posey's 2012 season and notice the tremendous contributions he gave the Giants on a near-rookie contract.

Also, check out where Aramis Ramirez ranks, at 8. That is pretty impressive for a guy that many overlooked last offseason. He was worth about 230% more than he made last season -- tremendous value at a postion where it is hard to come by.

Braun is an interesting player to see on the list. At first, I had forgotten how affordable his extension turned out to be since he had signed it. Braun will be paid at most $19 million per season up until 2020, with an option for $20 million in 2021. For the time being, Braun will be making less than Shane Victorino until at least 2016 (on a per-season basis).

But on the bottom 25, we have some usual suspects:

It is no secret that Ryan Howard was serious dead weight on that Phillies' payroll last year. Jason Bay and Vernon Wells fall under the same category of sluggers turned slumpers.

Jeff Francoeur and Delmon Young fall under the same category: former top prospects turned incumbent starters who should have paid their team for their starting spots.

A-Rod also finds himself in the list, at number 20. He's the only player on the list with a somewhat substantial positive WAR. He was playable but not for the amount due to him in 2012.

Rookies

One thing is missing here: rookies.

I thought I would separate rookies from the others because their dValue will be skewed by their rookie contracts. Nonetheless, here is the list, and the top three players are no surprise.

Num Name WAR Salary wSalary dValue
1 Mike Trout 10 $510,000.00 $14,543,925.00 $14,033,925.00
2 Bryce Harper 4.9 $500,000.00 $7,339,108.25 $6,839,108.25
3 Yoenis Cespedes 3.1 $6,500,000.00 $9,899,231.75 $3,399,231.75
4 Norichika Aoki 2.9 $1,000,000.00 $4,942,023.25 $3,942,023.25
5 Todd Frazier 2.8 $480,000.00 $4,358,919.00 $3,878,919.00
6 Zack Cozart 2.7 $480,000.00 $4,217,814.75 $3,737,814.75
7 Yasmani Grandal 2.6 $750,000.00 $4,306,210.50 $3,556,210.50
8 Andrelton Simmons 2.2 $450,000.00 $3,486,793.50 $3,036,793.50
9 Will Middlebrooks 2.1 $498,000.00 $3,386,489.25 $2,888,489.25
10 Yonder Alonso 2 $1,000,000.00 $3,672,085.00 $2,672,085.00

So, you can see Trout was the most valuable player last season according to dValue by around $3 million over Posey.

Norichika "Grit King" Aoki is a rookie most overlooked; one that deserves more praise and attention than he has recieved so far.

This list is a little more predictable. It's really a list of top rookies rather than most valuable in the context of their contract. But because many of their contracts are so similar, it is no surprise to see that the list is descending by WAR.

Review

See who fell in between the full list of rankings is below:

What are your guys' thoughts on the results? Any surprises? Does it pass the eye-test?

For the next installment of the series we will adjust wSalary for age and service time.

You can contact Max Weinstein @MaxWeinstein21

Btbs-twitter-insert_large

In This Article

Players

Trending Discussions

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Beyond the Box Score

You must be a member of Beyond the Box Score to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Beyond the Box Score. You should read them.

Join Beyond the Box Score

You must be a member of Beyond the Box Score to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Beyond the Box Score. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9351_tracker