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View Full Version : A.J. wants long term deal


KRS1
12-11-2005, 01:41 PM
It sounds like he really likes it here and of course we all really like him here so two cheers for AJ.
Per rotoworld.

A.J. Pierzynski hopes to be signed to a long-term deal by the White Sox this winter.
Pierzynski has one year remaining in arbitration and will then be eligible for free agency. The White Sox have yet to talk to him about a deal, but they might. "Obviously, getting Jim Thome and then signing Paulie (Konerko) were more important than getting to me," Pierzynski said.

I cant find the complete srticle anywhere, but I'm sure he was sincere with what he said.

Ahhh. here it be....http://www.dailysouthtown.com/southtown/dssports/pro/112sd5.htm

delben91
12-11-2005, 01:43 PM
From today's Southtown. Link. (http://www.dailysouthtown.com/southtown/dssports/pro/112sd5.htm)

Sounds like AJ really wants to stick around, and I have no doubt Kenny will get something done.

EDIT: KRS beat me to it.

IlliniSox4Life
12-11-2005, 01:46 PM
Get it done Kenny, the guy's a proven winner, and his controversies in the World Series will associate him with the White Sox forever.

TaylorStSox
12-11-2005, 01:56 PM
He's a valuable player right now, but I wouldn't sign him for more than 2 years. He's really bad defensively. He looked lost at the plate alot more last year than any year in his career. He isn't getting any younger.

CubsfansareDRUNK
12-11-2005, 02:00 PM
good. AJ is a key chemical of the clubhouse chemistry

The Deacon
12-11-2005, 02:02 PM
He's a valuable player right now, but I wouldn't sign him for more than 2 years. He's really bad defensively. He looked lost at the plate alot more last year than any year in his career. He isn't getting any younger.

?? He's 28 years old, thats a players prime. He doesnt have the greatest arm but he is still in the top 5 of all-round AL catchers. Plus, he pisses the other team off.

buehrle4cy05
12-11-2005, 02:04 PM
?? He's 28 years old. He doesnt have the greatest arm but he is still in the top 5 of all-round AL catchers.

Exactly. His ability to call a game is his best tool as a catcher.

Daver
12-11-2005, 02:05 PM
?? He's 28 years old, thats a players prime. He doesnt have the greatest arm but he is still in the top 5 of all-round AL catchers. Plus, he pisses the other team off. Top five? Your kidding right?

TaylorStSox
12-11-2005, 02:06 PM
?? He's 28 years old, thats a players prime. He doesnt have the greatest arm but he is still in the top 5 of all-round AL catchers. Plus, he pisses the other team off. He's among the top hitting catchers. I'll give you that. All around? Not a chance. He doesn't have an arm. He doesn't block balls well and he doesn't block the plate well. With his body type and position, 28 isn't young. I'm a huge AJ fan, but let's not pretend that he's better than he is. His best assets are the intangibles.

The Wimperoo
12-11-2005, 02:08 PM
He's among the top hitting catchers. I'll give you that. All around? Not a chance. He doesn't have an arm. He doesn't block balls well and he doesn't block the plate well. With his body type and position, 28 isn't young. I'm a huge AJ fan, but let's not pretend that he's better than he is. His best assets are the intangibles.

I guarantee he was the cause for about half of the wild pitches for Contreras and Garcia. There were so many pitches in the dirt that would have been stopped by a good defensive catcher.

TaylorStSox
12-11-2005, 02:10 PM
I guarantee he was the cause for about half of the wild pitches for Contreras and Garcia. There were so many pitches in the dirt that would have been stopped by a good defensive catcher.

Agreed 100%.

SoxSpeed22
12-11-2005, 02:14 PM
I guarantee he was the cause for about half of the wild pitches for Contreras and Garcia. There were so many pitches in the dirt that would have been stopped by a good defensive catcher.Ben Davis?

The Deacon
12-11-2005, 02:27 PM
Top five? Your kidding right?

Considering Javy Lopez and IRod are on the downside of their steroid-ridden careers and he is 28 and on the up-side?? I think an argument could be made. He is one of the best hitting catchers, he calls a good game, average arm, average D.
His 162 game average is .287, 13hrs, 77rbis, 36 2B. Pretty good for a catcher.

So who's better in the AL.

Varitek
Posada
Martinez
Molina
MAYBE Joe Mauer?

TaylorStSox
12-11-2005, 02:30 PM
Considering Javy Lopez and IRod are on the downside of their steroid-ridden careers and he is 28 and on the up-side?? I think an argument could be made. He is one of the best hitting catchers, he calls a good game, average arm, average D.
His 162 game average is .287, 13hrs, 77rbis, 36 2B. Pretty good for a catcher.

So who's better in the AL.

Varitek
Posada
Martinez
Molina
MAYBE Joe Mauer?

lol. You basically just called him league average. You say that there are 6 catchers better than him in the AL.

Saying that he's on the upside is a stretch. 28 isn't young for a catcher.

Scottiehaswheels
12-11-2005, 02:32 PM
So who's better in the AL.

Varitek
Posada
Martinez
Molina
MAYBE Joe Mauer?

If thats the list he might be top 4.... Posada may be moved to the NL, Molina might sign with an NL team... Catching in the AL might be weak next year..

The Deacon
12-11-2005, 02:35 PM
He's among the top hitting catchers. I'll give you that. All around? Not a chance. He doesn't have an arm. He doesn't block balls well and he doesn't block the plate well. With his body type and position, 28 isn't young. I'm a huge AJ fan, but let's not pretend that he's better than he is. His best assets are the intangibles.

Varitek and Posada weren't even in the league until they were 26 and 25. 28 is a player's prime.

Chisox003
12-11-2005, 02:40 PM
This thread has 200 response argument written all over it....

The Deacon
12-11-2005, 02:42 PM
lol. You basically just called him league average. You say that there are 6 catchers better than him in the AL.

Saying that he's on the upside is a stretch. 28 isn't young for a catcher.

I said there were 4 catchers better than him, MAYBE 5 if you want to count Mauer. And he is a better defender than Varitek, Posada and Martinez.

28 isnt old for any player, thats laughable.

delben91
12-11-2005, 02:43 PM
I said there were 4 catchers better than him, MAYBE 5 if you want to count Mauer. And he is a better defender than Varitek, Posada and Martinez.

28 isnt old for any player, thats laughable.

I don't think I'd rate him a better defender than Varitek, Posada or Martinez.

I do think he's better than any other option we have, and that a 2 year deal with a team option for a third year would probably be the way to go.

TaylorStSox
12-11-2005, 02:48 PM
I said there were 4 catchers better than him, MAYBE 5 if you want to count Mauer. And he is a better defender than Varitek, Posada and Martinez.

28 isnt old for any player, thats laughable.

What about his defense makes him better than anybody? Like I said, I like AJ. I wouldn't lock him up for more than 2 years though. He's not as athletic as any of the players you mentioned, Varitek withstanding. 28 is an average position players prime. Some catchers are different. AJ's defense has already diminished and last year was his worst offensive year IIRC.

It's like saying PK's only 29. Yes, he's 29 but he has the body of a 35 year old.

Scottiehaswheels
12-11-2005, 02:49 PM
I don't think I'd rate him a better defender than Varitek, Posada or Martinez.

I do think he's better than any other option we have, and that a 2 year deal with a team option for a third year would probably be the way to go.

How are we defining better defender? PB's? E's? CS? RF? comparing those stats to all the guys mentioned.. AJ is right there if not better than a couple of them over the past couple years..

MHOUSE
12-11-2005, 02:50 PM
AJ plays hard, is a 'grinder' and all that jazz, and calls a great game. All the pitchers this year said that he helped then out a lot. When was the last time we had a veteran catcher as our everyday starter? (Sandy doesn't count) We've been throwing out Olivo, Davis, Burke, Paul, MJ, not many guys who would be considered in the 'top' anything in either league. AJ is the best catcher we've had behind the plate in the last four seasons. He's worth a 3-year deal in my opinion. His intangibles and clubhouse prescence are worth every penny. Plus he can hit!

TaylorStSox
12-11-2005, 02:50 PM
How are we defining better defender? PB's? E's? CS? RF? comparing those stats to all the guys mentioned.. AJ is right there if not better than a couple of them over the past couple years..

Your first problem was using stats to evaluate defense.

SOXintheBURGH
12-11-2005, 02:52 PM
Your first problem was using stats to evaluate defense.

Just wait until the propellor heads unite. :o:

Scottiehaswheels
12-11-2005, 02:54 PM
Your first problem was using stats to evaluate defense.

Well look at the pitchers we use and they stuff they throw in comparison to what Varitek, Posada, and the rest catch... Varitek doesn't catch for Wakefield so no knuckleball, basically those guys catch for mostly fastball pitchers so yes I would expect them to stop the ball on a more frequent basis than AJ catching Jose's fork, etc.... Our pitchers are mostly junkball pitchers so yes defensively he might not compare to others...

i will admit his throws down to second seriously lack accuracy though...

Taliesinrk
12-11-2005, 02:54 PM
This thread has 200 response argument written all over it....

Indeed.. so let me help it out..

I agree AJ is average/ a bit above average with his gameplay (tools, stats, etc.) He's a good hitting catcher but so-so defensively IMO. While his strongest suit is most likely that he seems to call a good game (evidenced by this season's pitching breakthroughs), his defense really isn't all that good.

What is key here, IMO, isn't the chemistry he brings to the table (which is one of his qualities) but rather the intangibles ON THE FIELD. It is sooo soo hard to find a TRUE "GAMER" this day in age: and that is the definition of AJ. If you look up "gamer" in the encyclopedia/ dictionary, a picture of AJ Pierzynski should follow. This guy isn't just a guy who doesn't go 100%, but 150% all the time... he is aware, heads-up, and smart. That combination is absolutely killer, and I don't think anyone who watched the post-season can not understand or argue.

The reason the Sox should re-sign AJ is that he is true baseball player. A throwback to the days of old. A guy who plays the game because he loves it and plays for what's on the front of his jersey. He'll not only play his heart out for his team, but also for his teammates. I have no doubt that if someone on the Sox needed a teammate to get their back that AJ would be the man to do it. AJ should be the catcher of the Sox's future.. whether or not he's a perennial All-Star.

HomeFish
12-11-2005, 03:00 PM
AJ's offensive regression really worries me. But where are the Sox going to find an alternative that isn't ridiculously overpriced or a Mendoza-line hitter? Not anywhere I see.

MHOUSE
12-11-2005, 03:03 PM
Indeed.. so let me help it out..

I agree AJ is average/ a bit above average with his gameplay (tools, stats, etc.) He's a good hitting catcher but so-so defensively IMO. While his strongest suit is most likely that he seems to call a good game (evidenced by this season's pitching breakthroughs), his defense really isn't all that good.

What is key here, IMO, isn't the chemistry he brings to the table (which is one of his qualities) but rather the intangibles ON THE FIELD. It is sooo soo hard to find a TRUE "GAMER" this day in age: and that is the definition of AJ. If you look up "gamer" in the encyclopedia/ dictionary, a picture of AJ Pierzynski should follow. This guy isn't just a guy who doesn't go 100%, but 150% all the time... he is aware, heads-up, and smart. That combination is absolutely killer, and I don't think anyone who watched the post-season can not understand or argue.

The reason the Sox should re-sign AJ is that he is true baseball player. A throwback to the days of old. A guy who plays the game because he loves it and plays for what's on the front of his jersey. He'll not only play his heart out for his team, but also for his teammates. I have no doubt that if someone on the Sox needed a teammate to get their back that AJ would be the man to do it. AJ should be the catcher of the Sox's future.. whether or not he's a perennial All-Star.

Incredibly well done Taliesinrk. Great post! :gulp:

Unregistered
12-11-2005, 03:03 PM
...
http://www.whitesoxinteractive.com/vbulletin/images/smilies/eek.gif

Welcome back. :cool:

Scottiehaswheels
12-11-2005, 03:06 PM
Like I said, I like AJ. I wouldn't lock him up for more than 2 years though.

And I agree with you here... Maybe a club option for a 3rd year... Hopefully by then Stewart will be able to be backup in '08 and then be starting in '09

SABRSox
12-11-2005, 03:09 PM
AJ top 5 in the AL? No way. Top 10, maybe.

Sign him to a 2 year deal, club option on the third. That's a solid plan.

Daver
12-11-2005, 03:11 PM
Indeed.. so let me help it out..

I agree AJ is average/ a bit above average with his gameplay (tools, stats, etc.) He's a good hitting catcher but so-so defensively IMO. While his strongest suit is most likely that he seems to call a good game (evidenced by this season's pitching breakthroughs), his defense really isn't all that good.

What is key here, IMO, isn't the chemistry he brings to the table (which is one of his qualities) but rather the intangibles ON THE FIELD. It is sooo soo hard to find a TRUE "GAMER" this day in age: and that is the definition of AJ. If you look up "gamer" in the encyclopedia/ dictionary, a picture of AJ Pierzynski should follow. This guy isn't just a guy who doesn't go 100%, but 150% all the time... he is aware, heads-up, and smart. That combination is absolutely killer, and I don't think anyone who watched the post-season can not understand or argue.

The reason the Sox should re-sign AJ is that he is true baseball player. A throwback to the days of old. A guy who plays the game because he loves it and plays for what's on the front of his jersey. He'll not only play his heart out for his team, but also for his teammates. I have no doubt that if someone on the Sox needed a teammate to get their back that AJ would be the man to do it. AJ should be the catcher of the Sox's future.. whether or not he's a perennial All-Star.

So basically, he's a crappy catcher, but he's a good teammate while being a crappy catcher.

starboy0
12-11-2005, 03:13 PM
I hope KW locks him up for awhile. AJ is a lifetime .287 hitter. That puts him in the top 4% of batting average.

(Assuming batting averages are normally distributed, mean = .266 and s.d. = .012)

And I think he knows how to put fingers down. Garland especially seemed to benefit from the way he calls games.

He seemed to indeed be that particle of sand that the oyster requires to make a pearl. He gave our clubhouse an edge.

HomeFish
12-11-2005, 03:15 PM
The AJ haters should point out who exactly they plan to replace AJ with, and how that person will be superior to AJ.

Just saying that so-and-so prospect is better defensively won't cut it either. This is the twenty-first century, not 1917. Short-Stops and Catchers have to hit well these days.

Taliesinrk
12-11-2005, 03:15 PM
So basically, he's a crappy catcher, but he's a good teammate while being a crappy catcher.

Sorry.. I'm not exactly following here.. is that what you're saying? or you're saying that that's what my post reflects? either way that's wrong. crappy catcher? Mike Piazza..

I mean come on.. do you really think our staff could have done what they did if AJ was a "crappy catcher?? No way..

Furthermore.. AJ isn't a good teammate.. he's a great one..

SABRSox
12-11-2005, 03:15 PM
I hope KW locks him up for awhile. AJ is a lifetime .287 hitter. That puts him in the top 4% of batting average.

(Assuming batting averages are normally distributed, mean = .266 and s.d. = .012)

And I think he knows how to put fingers down. Garland especially seemed to benefit from the way he calls games.

He seemed to indeed be that particle of sand that the oyster requires to make a pearl. He gave our clubhouse an edge.

My problem with this argument is two fold. 1, you've got to weigh his last season's batting average more than his previous years. I'm starting to smell a downward trend in AJ's offense.

2, I'm not sure how much of the game calling is coming from AJ or coming from the bench.

Unregistered
12-11-2005, 03:16 PM
Daver,

With respect, is there anyone on the Sox that you actually like?

RallyBowl
12-11-2005, 03:23 PM
He's really bad defensively. He looked lost at the plate alot more last year than any year in his career.


Um, Didn't he have like only one or two errors all last year? IIRC, he had one of the top fielding percantages in the majors last year.

I don't understand how anyone on this board can talk bad about AJ or belittle his accomplishments and abilities. We don't win the Series without him, BOTTOM LINE. We should re-sign him long term, ASAP.

Shame on anyone who thinks otherwise.

itsnotrequired
12-11-2005, 03:28 PM
Top five? Your kidding right?

Daver has always raved about AJ's defense. Why the change of heart?:redneck

TaylorStSox
12-11-2005, 03:47 PM
Um, Didn't he have like only one or two errors all last year? IIRC, he had one of the top fielding percantages in the majors last year.

I don't understand how anyone on this board can talk bad about AJ or belittle his accomplishments and abilities. We don't win the Series without him, BOTTOM LINE. We should re-sign him long term, ASAP.

Shame on anyone who thinks otherwise.

I'll call it like I see it. I'm not going to shy away from criticizing our players because they wear the Sox uniform. AJ Pierzynski is a poor defensive catcher. Judging his ability based on errors is a bad method. He had more trouble blocking balls than any other catcher I saw on a consistant basis. Garcia and Contreras passed balls are a reflection of this.

I love the intangibles he adds. I like his bat, but there is a worrisome downward trend. I wouldn't get rid of him. I'd sign him for 2 years and move on from there.

You're right. We wouldn't have won the series without him. That was last year though. I have a sentimental attachment to the uniforms more than the players that wear that uniform. If I were GM, which we all are on the net, I wouldn't base any decisions on sentimentality. I probably wouldn't sign any 28 year old catcher to a long term deal. Especially a 28 year old catcher who isn't athletic. Age isn't the end all of judging longevity. Athleticism is a huge factor. Again, I bring up the PK scenario. He's the oldest 29 year old in the league.

Daver
12-11-2005, 03:48 PM
Daver,

With respect, is there anyone on the Sox that you actually like?

All of them.

That being said, I'm not going exxagerate a players abilities because he wears a Sox uniform.

AJ is a crappy catcher, but he is a helluva ballplayer.

Frater Perdurabo
12-11-2005, 03:58 PM
I remember reading Daver's analysis of AJ's defensive deficiencies. I especially watched for them when I was able to watch Sox games on TV. Daver is right. AJ is fair to poor at receiving the ball, especially blocking pitches in the dirt.

IMHO, as much as AJ made Sox pitchers better, Sox pitchers - especially Buehrle and Garland - made AJ a better catcher. Those two threw the pitch AJ wanted and threw it where AJ expected it. At the same time, Garcia and Contreras tied for the AL lead in wild pitches, no doubt in large part due to AJ's limited defensive abilities. Ouch!

Still, AJ's weaknesses certainly did not cripple the Sox in 2005; especially considering they won the World Series. One might argue that without his heads-up play at the plate in Game 2 against the Angels, the Sox very well may have lost that game and gone to LA down 2-0. The ALCS would have been completely different without AJ's ability to oversell the dropped the strike.

If I were KW, I'd offer AJ a two-year deal, with a team option for a third, and then I'd try to lock up Garland and then Buehrle long-term. For all his weaknesses, AJ was an integral part of a World Series-winning team, and seemingly played a big part in the Twins' success from 2001 to 2003. He may not be the best catcher, but he's proven himself to be a winner.

TaylorStSox
12-11-2005, 04:04 PM
I remember reading Daver's analysis of AJ's defensive deficiencies. I especially watched for them when I was able to watch Sox games on TV. Daver is right. AJ is fair to poor at receiving the ball, especially blocking pitches in the dirt.

IMHO, as much as AJ made Sox pitchers better, Sox pitchers - especially Buehrle and Garland - made AJ a better catcher. Those two threw the pitch AJ wanted and threw it where AJ expected it. At the same time, Garcia and Contreras tied for the AL lead in wild pitches, no doubt in large part due to AJ's limited defensive abilities. Ouch!

Still, AJ's weaknesses certainly did not cripple the Sox in 2005; especially considering they won the World Series. One might argue that without his heads-up play at the plate in Game 2 against the Angels, the Sox very well may have lost that game and gone to LA down 2-0. The ALCS would have been completely different without AJ's ability to oversell the dropped the strike.

If I were KW, I'd offer AJ a two-year deal, with a team option for a third, and then I'd try to lock up Garland and then Buehrle long-term. For all his weaknesses, AJ was an integral part of a World Series-winning team, and seemingly played a big part in the Twins' success from 2001 to 2003. He may not be the best catcher, but he's proven himself to be a winner.

Very well said. You won the thread!

delben91
12-11-2005, 04:08 PM
Very well said. You won the thread!

Ahem...


I do think he's better than any other option we have, and that a 2 year deal with a team option for a third year would probably be the way to go.


:tongue: Frater just added the analysis which I thought was obvious.

TaylorStSox
12-11-2005, 04:10 PM
Ahem...



:tongue: Frater just added the analysis which I thought was obvious.

:redface: I noticed your post too but went for the analysis. Sorry. :redneck

TheVulture
12-11-2005, 04:13 PM
Given the lack of depth behind the plate in the Sox organization as far as I'm aware and the difficulty in acquiring quality in that department, I'd vote for a good 3 year deal for AJ. The guy is pretty poor defensively, but he's one of the best at handling a pitching staff and gives the sox a nice left handed bat for the bottom of the order. I don't see the sox doing any better than AJ over the next few years - they certainly haven't since Fisk and Karko, or Ray Schalk if you go by World Series Championships!

tebman
12-11-2005, 04:18 PM
The AJ haters should point out who exactly they plan to replace AJ with, and how that person will be superior to AJ.

:versatile You rang? I can fake a good caught-third-strike!

Scottiehaswheels
12-11-2005, 04:18 PM
Given the lack of depth behind the plate in the Sox organization as far as I'm aware and the difficulty in acquiring quality in that department, I'd vote for a good 3 year deal for AJ. The guy is pretty poor defensively, but he's one of the best at handling a pitching staff and gives the sox a nice left handed bat for the bottom of the order. I don't see the sox doing any better than AJ over the next few years

Chris Stewart from all the things I've heard about him is pretty good in AA... other than that though I couldn't tell ya.... 23 yrs old... hit about .285 with 11HR this year.. not sure how he is behind the dish though

IggyD
12-11-2005, 04:21 PM
Hope the get it done before next year and lock him in...he is a great catcher and one of many that are the Face of our White Sox. A true heads up player!

jerry myers
12-11-2005, 04:51 PM
you can break it all down but the fact is he was a HUGE part of our championship year. very huge in all ways, hes only 28 and hes happy here. you couldnt replace him even with a better or whatever your looking for catcher. and i dont even know why , its just that way,know what i mean.

Unregistered
12-11-2005, 04:53 PM
All of them.

That being said, I'm not going exxagerate a players abilities because he wears a Sox uniform.

AJ is a crappy catcher, but he is a helluva ballplayer.Ok, good - just making sure. http://www.whitesoxinteractive.com/vbulletin/images/smilies/wink.gif

Fredsox
12-11-2005, 05:02 PM
Perhaps we can take a different perspective on this debate. The initial question was : do we give AJ a 3 year deal? My vote is yes and I'll articulate my reasons.

1. He is, as many posters have gone to great lengths to state, a better than average baseball player who can play the catcher's position reasonably well. Certainly well enough that you will not lose games because of him (insert Josh Paul here...).

2. He will not be expensive to sign now. A multi-year deal gives you consistency behind the plate while offering you flexibility over the duration of the agreement.

3. He has remained healthy throughout his career. I put forth the evidence of his games played in the past 4 years (130, 137, 131, 128). So he takes reasonable care of himself, a good thing when playing this position.

4. If you find out you want to go in a different direction in 1 or 2 years he won't be difficult to sit down or trade because his contract won't be obnoxiously prohibitive. Signing him now does not keep you from either trading for or developing another catcher.

Brian26
12-11-2005, 05:05 PM
All of them.

That being said, I'm not going exxagerate a players abilities because he wears a Sox uniform.

AJ is a crappy catcher, but he is a helluva ballplayer.

Honest question- Do you think AJ calls a good game? I was reading somewhere that Buehrle shook AJ off only one time all season. I know you've got a background in catching. Do you give any of the credit for the four straight complete games to AJ?

Daver
12-11-2005, 05:13 PM
Honest question- Do you think AJ calls a good game? I was reading somewhere that Buehrle shook AJ off only one time all season. I know you've got a background in catching. Do you give any of the credit for the four straight complete games to AJ?

He learned to call a good game, at the start of the season Don Cooper was calling the pitches, and gradually stopped doing it as AJ learned what to call and when, by the end of the season AJ was only getting calls from the dugout on particular hitters. Yeah, I'll give him the credit he deserves for the playoffs, he did a great job.

Exit_Only
12-11-2005, 05:24 PM
Perhaps we can take a different perspective on this debate. The initial question was : do we give AJ a 3 year deal? My vote is yes and I'll articulate my reasons.

1. He is, as many posters have gone to great lengths to state, a better than average baseball player who can play the catcher's position reasonably well. Certainly well enough that you will not lose games because of him (insert Josh Paul here...).

2. He will not be expensive to sign now. A multi-year deal gives you consistency behind the plate while offering you flexibility over the duration of the agreement.

3. He has remained healthy throughout his career. I put forth the evidence of his games played in the past 4 years (130, 137, 131, 128). So he takes reasonable care of himself, a good thing when playing this position.

4. If you find out you want to go in a different direction in 1 or 2 years he won't be difficult to sit down or trade because his contract won't be obnoxiously prohibitive. Signing him now does not keep you from either trading for or developing another catcher.

Your fourth point is very important if true because that would make the signing a low risk one.

On top of all that, AJ sure has a knack for winning the division.

SoxSpeed22
12-11-2005, 05:32 PM
On top of all that, AJ sure has a knack for winning the division.He catches winners, period.
I would do it, because he is the first stable catcher we've had since Kark. He didn't use left field like he did in Minnesota, once he does that, he can be a .300 hitter again. It is true that he couldn't throw out baserunners, but Contreras, Garcia and El Duque were terrible at holding runners and most of the stolen bases were against those three. He calls a game better than most other catchers, and he has that grinder mentality that Ozzie wants.

chisox77
12-11-2005, 06:04 PM
Signing A.J. to a two, maybe three year deal is the best way to go.Smart, ultra-competitive, resourceful, and a winner. And another thing (as mentioned a few times in this thread), who will the Sox find that is better at this position?Acquiring A.J. was a pivotal deal last winter (remember the threads that dealt with this issue? pretty good discussions we had). He did exactly what those of us who loved the deal had hoped for - become a major ingredient for a winning team, a team that went the distance.Besides, he is of Polish ancestory. He belongs in Chicago for at least a few more years.

ChiSoxLifer
12-11-2005, 06:23 PM
I like AJ and think he should get a three year contract. We can go back and forth about his stats, game-calling, and grinder mentality. He may not be the perfect catcher. However, he's just the perfect catcher for this team.

RowanDye
12-11-2005, 06:30 PM
All of them.

That being said, I'm not going exxagerate a players abilities because he wears a Sox uniform.

AJ is a crappy catcher, but he is a helluva ballplayer. Huh? At some point doesn't winning and being "a helluva ballplayer" = not a crappy catcher. I still don't see 5 catchers better than him in the AL, but whatever. Give AJ his money.

MsSoxVixen22
12-11-2005, 07:30 PM
I'll be honest...when I first heard we were getting AJ, I was like oh ****. But after awhile and I seen how actually was and what an awesome player he is, he's become one of my fav guys on the team. He's definately a sparkplug for this team and I hope KW does his best to keep hi here.

ma-gaga
12-11-2005, 09:06 PM
I think he holds out for a 3 year deal. Otherwise he takes a one year deal and hits FA next year. IMO, a 3 year, $20 Million deal does it.

I don't think he's worth the money over the life of the deal, but I'd definitely take him over 20 of the other catchers playing the game.

:cool:

Taliesinrk
12-11-2005, 09:22 PM
I think he holds out for a 3 year deal. Otherwise he takes a one year deal and hits FA next year. IMO, a 3 year, $20 Million deal does it.

I don't think he's worth the money over the life of the deal, but I'd definitely take him over 20 of the other catchers playing the game.

:cool:

Good think that was speculation.. otherwise I think my heart would have stopped... giving AJ almost 7 mil/year??!?!?!?!!?!? NFW

Theanticub
12-12-2005, 01:59 AM
Top five? Your kidding right? I agree with Daver here, Good catcher, but needs to work on some things.

kevin57
12-12-2005, 06:51 AM
What A.J. brings to the table, er, plate is how he "unscrambles" our pitchers' minds. Garcia, Garland, and Contreras...very good ability...and all head-cases. That's an intangible you don't want to ignore.

Plus, he gets into the heads of opposing players BIG TIME :D:

D. TODD
12-12-2005, 08:57 AM
Good think that was speculation.. otherwise I think my heart would have stopped... giving AJ almost 7 mil/year??!?!?!?!!?!? NFW I agree that is too much for A.J.. Surely he can be had for much less!

Pasqua's Posers
12-12-2005, 09:23 AM
Top five? Your kidding right?

then where does he fit in===in the A.L. only?

I don't know why guys continue to bash AJ defensively when he committed 1 or maybe 2 errors ALL SEASON....

VASoxfan1
12-12-2005, 09:34 AM
part of being a defensive catcher is being able to throw people out. and i think the phrase most used in describing his ability is, "teams aren't afraid to run against him."

that aside offensively he's good, he's a lefty bat, and the sox don't have an heir apparent coming any time soon. So i think a three year deal is reasonable

Ol' No. 2
12-12-2005, 09:35 AM
He learned to call a good game, at the start of the season Don Cooper was calling the pitches, and gradually stopped doing it as AJ learned what to call and when, by the end of the season AJ was only getting calls from the dugout on particular hitters. Yeah, I'll give him the credit he deserves for the playoffs, he did a great job.I would attribute Cooper calling pitches early in the season to Pierzynski's unfamiliarity with the pitchers more than anything else. I had serious reservations when KW first signed him, mostly due to his average defense. No question he's not that good at blocking balls in the dirt and he doesn't have a good throwing arm, but calling the game and handling the pitchers is a big part of catching. You have to give him at least part of the credit for Garland's and Contreras' improvement. I would have no problem with a 3-year deal if the dollars weren't excessive - maybe $18M total. It's not as if the Sox have Carlton Fisk Jr. waiting in the wings. Good catchers are scarce. When you get one, hold onto him.

ma-gaga
12-12-2005, 09:46 AM
Good think that was speculation.. otherwise I think my heart would have stopped... giving AJ almost 7 mil/year??!?!?!?!!?!? NFW

5/7/9 = 21. 3 Year deal. I'd put money on it.

He's better than Veritek, Posada and Pudge who are ALL getting significantly more dollars than AJ. He's only ONE year from unrestricted FA, and the Yankees are going to be looking for a catcher next year. The Cubs could use a catcher next year. The Dodgers could use a catcher next year. There are a lot of big market teams that will throw AJ a ton of money next year...

I know he only made $2.5M last year, but he took a discount and he delivered. I'm not trying to burst anyones bubble, but he's got 3/20 written all over him, and truthfully, it's not that a BAD of a deal.

But I could be wrong. So please, go ahead, tell me WHY he would sign a 2 year/$10M deal. I think AJ holds out a big deal. I think Kenny pays it. And I think the fans love it.

:cool:

Domeshot17
12-12-2005, 10:01 AM
I love AJ, but he isnt better than Varitek. Pudge should be null and void for the fact he got his dollars on the juice, but hes still being paid to put fans in the seats and is one of the top 3 defensive C in baseball. Posada is on the decline of his career obviously, but at his prime he was one of the better offensive catchers in baseball. AJ falls in that second teir of catchers, the good but not great ones. My guess is 3 years 4.25 mil with a club option for a 4th year and 6 mil.

Since we all are agreed AJ is average at best Defensively, and both him and Varitek have that same ability to call educated games behind the plate, look at Variteks offensive numbers compared to AJ.

last 3 years Varitek(05)281 22 70, (04)296 18 73, (03)273 25 85.
AJ (05) 257 18 56, (04)272 11 77 (05)312 11 74

Realist
12-12-2005, 10:08 AM
I'm on the side of the folks that consider his offense and intangibles to outweigh any weaknesses in how he catches or throws the ball.

Think back to all the games last season. How many times did you say, "Oh man...if we only had a good catcher..." after A.J. failed to get the job done behind the plate? It really wasn't that often.

Sign him to the long term contract. He'll win or factor in a helluva lot more wins for us then he'll lose.

gobears1987
12-12-2005, 01:40 PM
part of being a defensive catcher is being able to throw people out. and i think the phrase most used in describing his ability is, "teams aren't afraid to run against him."

that aside offensively he's good, he's a lefty bat, and the sox don't have an heir apparent coming any time soon. So i think a three year deal is reasonableIt is mainly the pitcher's job to hold runners. Remember that article on ESPN that Buehrle wrote last year about holding runners. He said there is always talk about catchers who throw runners out. He then said that the job of keeping runners from stealing is that of the pitcher not catcher. He said 90% of throwing runners out is up to the pitcher. That is from Buehrle so I think it's pretty credible. I mean, look at his success rate of holding runners.

Palehose13
12-12-2005, 01:47 PM
I'd love to sign AJ to a 3 year deal. Good catchers aren't a dime a dozen. It's not that he is great defensively, as many have pointed put, but the intangibles that he brings to the table. IMO, he is an asset to the team. I'd start at 3/9mil and end discussion at 3/18.

Exit_Only
12-12-2005, 02:03 PM
Think back to all the games last season. How many times did you say, "Oh man...if we only had a good catcher..." after A.J. failed to get the job done behind the plate? It really wasn't that often.


"Duke, you've been here before. Get us out of it again."

I remember Garland and Buehrle getting out of some big jams too. I don't remember all the details, but something to do with this cast of characters: Garland, AJP, Tejada, 1st place Orioles threatening, changeup, strike 3, jam ova.

VASoxfan1
12-12-2005, 02:12 PM
I never saw that article from buehrle but i would love to. is it still on there or do you know where i could find it?

Don't get me wrong me. I think he's very worth resigning but I don't think he can be put up there with posada and varitek. But if they signed him to a 3 year deal with some sort of 4th year option I think thats a smart move by the sox.

My opinion with the konerko deal was that the 5th year was worth even if he's only produtive for 3-4 of those 5 years bececause the sox have a window of opportunity right now where they can put together a string of regular playoff appearances

Flight #24
12-12-2005, 02:15 PM
I'd love to sign AJ to a 3 year deal. Good catchers aren't a dime a dozen. It's not that he is great defensively, as many have pointed put, but the intangibles that he brings to the table. IMO, he is an asset to the team. I'd start at 3/9mil and end discussion at 3/15.

He took a paycut to come to the Sox last year at $2.25M, he ain't signing for $3m/yr. Ramon Hernandez just signed for 4/$27, or just under $7M/yr. His #s are better than AJs, but AJ is a playoff hero. IMO the discussion begins at 3/$15, and he'll probably take something like 3/$18.

I would say if they have the budget, that's a great allocation of resources, but less important than say, keeping Garland. But if Jon's gone anyway (barring a trade for a guy like Tejada), keeping AJ at $6M/yr is a good investment, IMO.

Palehose13
12-12-2005, 02:20 PM
He took a paycut to come to the Sox last year at $2.25M, he ain't signing for $3m/yr. Ramon Hernandez just signed for 4/$27, or just under $7M/yr. His #s are better than AJs, but AJ is a playoff hero. IMO the discussion begins at 3/$15, and he'll probably take something like 3/$18.

I would say if they have the budget, that's a great allocation of resources, but less important than say, keeping Garland. But if Jon's gone anyway (barring a trade for a guy like Tejada), keeping AJ at $6M/yr is a good investment, IMO.

I was looking for his salary and couldn't find it. I just did some research and I agree with you. I retract and would end at 3/18 instead of 3/15.

ma-gaga
12-12-2005, 02:25 PM
I love AJ, but he isnt better than Varitek. ...

Apparently my memory is failing. I rechecked the stats, and although I don't put a ton of value into Batting Average and RBI's, offensively Varitek HAS been a lot better than AJ over the last two years. Part of me must still be stuck in 2003, where AJ WAS better, younger and cheaper, and the Twins were idiots to trade him away for a relief pitcher and a couple of minor leaguers.

That said, AJ is 5 years younger than Varitek, and will cost half as much. I think he's a good signing, but people should be aware he's going to cost twice what they think he should get, and that's not necessarily bad.

:cool:

ChiSoxGirl
12-12-2005, 02:41 PM
I say you have to sign A.J. to a long term deal, no questions asked! I'm a big believer in the fact that he had a lot to do with the newfound success of one Jon Garland, not to mention the second half turn-around of our horse, Contreras. He knows what pitches to call and at what times, plain and simple.

In regards to him not being the best defensively behind the plate, so what? The reality is that if our pitching staff is as solid as it was this past season, just how many runners will even be getting on base to begin with? I watched or listened to almost every game this season and can't recall one when I thought to myself, "if only A.J. had an arm and would've nailed that guy trying to steal 2nd or 3rd, which set up the tying or go-ahead run, we wouldn't have lost this game."

Ink the man, Kenny! :cool:

lostletters
12-12-2005, 03:06 PM
Considering Javy Lopez and IRod are on the downside of their steroid-ridden careers and he is 28 and on the up-side?? I think an argument could be made. He is one of the best hitting catchers, he calls a good game, average arm, average D.
His 162 game average is .287, 13hrs, 77rbis, 36 2B. Pretty good for a catcher.

So who's better in the AL.

Varitek
Posada
Martinez
Molina
MAYBE Joe Mauer? Out of those I would only give you Molina. AJ may not have the best arm, but he remains the best pitch caller in MLB. He handles pitchers brilliantly. Good veteran catchers AJs age are hard to come by, the guy is a proven winner. He knows how to handle young pitchers as well. Sign him to a long term deal, he is a core to this team.

soxfanreggie
12-12-2005, 03:14 PM
We need AJ around for a little while. I don't know what AJ considers to be long-term, but I would be good for 3 years, $15 mil. All of our top catchers were older...Cassanova, Burke, etc. We need to get some good, young catching prospects.