Lohse still looking for a club

Why is Kyle Lohse still not signed by a club?

When free agents declared this year, Zack Greinke got all the attention. From a stuff perspective, I believe Greinke had the best stuff of all the free agent pitchers on the market, and he was given a huge contract by the Dodgers. I will never say a player isn’t worth what he is paid, because I learned a long time ago that worth is subjective.

When I bought my ranch, the man I bought it from said that he had $40,000 worth of equipment on the premises. I told him that he should then haul it up on the highway and sell it, because it is only worth what someone is willing to pay for it, and I wasn’t paying $40,000 for it. In the end, I got it all for free. So Greinke got what he was worth because someone was willing to pay him that.

I still feel the same way today that I felt when free agency started: Lohse doesn’t have the best stuff, but he is the best pitcher available. The problem here is that he is 34 years old and is represented by Scott Boras. I’m sure Boras feels that his client is worth three or four years at probably around $16 million a year. (I’m guessing on the years and money.)

But I understand why it is taking so long for him to sign. Over the last few years since PEDs testing has kicked in, players signing multi-year contracts at age 35 and beyond have virtually gone away. So at 34 years old, Kyle and his agent know that this is his last chance to sign a multi-year deal.

It would not surprise me at all if he didn’t sign until late March. Would I sign him to a three-year deal? Yes, I would, because he knows how to pitch. He doesn’t rely on an overpowering fastball. He locates and changes speeds. I believe that there will be a team that will sign him to a three-year deal, but only because I think there will be a team with an otherwise legit chance to compete for a World Series title that has a key pitcher get hurt in Spring Training, hurting their chances dramatically.

That brings me back to “It ain’t worth but what it will bring.” Right now Lohse is not worth to anyone what he is asking for. If no one important on a contending staff gets hurt, I believe he will end up signing a one-year deal. I know if I had a team that had a chance to win the World Series this year or next, I would sign Kyle Lohse in a heartbeat. As I stated earlier, I believe he is — and was — the best free agent pitcher available this offseason.

1 Comment

This exact situation happened with Loshe in 2008. He held out for a better offer and wound up not get signed until mid-March when he got just a 1 year deal from the Cards. After he pitched well that season, the Cards gave him the 4-year deal that just expired. Looks like history may repeat.

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