Manny Machado 10 years $300,000,000

The San Diego Padres have officially signed Manny Machado and they opened up the check book. 10 years, $300,000,000 - 300 million dollars. That now makes two straight offseasons where the Padres got out the check book and signed a large contract, they signed Eric Hosmer last offseason for 8 years and $144 million. I get what they are trying to do by turning the organization around and make it a more appealing place for other free agents to go in the future but I just don’t think Manny Machado is the kind of guy that makes sense for them.

“Why’s he pretending to flick money?” - average baseball fans watching Machado in the playoffs

Let’s take a look at it from strictly a business aspect. $300,000,000 over 10 years for Manny Machado so depending on the structure that breaks out to $30,000,000 per season. The average ticket price for a San Diego Padres game in 2018 was $21.78. The average attendance at Padres games in 2018 was 26,772 per game. Petco Park holds 42,445. Doubtful they will sell out every game. So how many extra fans will Machado put in the seats? There’s no way to predict that but based on his $30 million salary this season, he would need to put about 1,378,000 more fans in the seats over the whole season to make pay his salary off, or sell 1,330,000 t-shirt jerseys, or sell 4 million domestic draft beers at $7.25 a pop or sell 7.5 million hot dogs at $4 a piece. $30,000,000 is a lot of money. Is Manny worth it? We will see.

A lot of media members have already talked about and tweeted that this is the largest contract in sports history, but unfortunately all of the “experts” who said that are wrong. Boxing is a sport and Canelo Alvarez is currently riding a 5 year $365 million contract ($73 million a year). Giancarlo Stanton is currently riding a 13 year $325 million ($25 million a year). Machado comes in with the third largest contract, for now. He will drop to 4 and 5 when Bryce Harper signs for $325 million and Mookie Betts gets an extension for $350 million. Crazy numbers and you would think these organizations would learn from the previous results of large contracts. How did this ones work out? Comparing the stats for the 3 years before the deal was signed and with the 3 years after:

Alex Rodriguez 10 years - $275 million - signed 2008 -

3 years before:

Avg 308, HR 45, & RBI 135

3 years after:

Avg 286, HR 30, & RBI 125

Miguel Cabrera 8 years - $247 million - signed 2016

3 years before:

Avg 332, HR 29, & RBI 107

3 years after:

Avg 287, HR 19, & RBI 63

Robinson Cano 10 years - $240 million - signed 2014

3 years before:

Avg 297, HR 29, & RBI 106

3 years after:

Avg 254, HR 24, & RBI 88

Albert Pujols 10 years - $240 million - signed 2012

3 years before:

Avg 312, HR 42, & RBI 117

3 years after:

Avg 271, HR 25, & RBI 91

Yes, of course age factors in after the contract is signed in all four of these examples but the production drops off significantly. You can bet on Manny’s production dropping off. Let’s just see if this signing along with last years’ is enough to lure more free agents to head out to San Diego. I wouldn’t bet on it.