Will McDonald writes on SB Nation.com that Magglio Ordonez’s injury could be a blessing in disguise for the Tigers for contractual regions.
If Magglio Ordonez starts 135 games this season his contract option for 2011 will vest, at a salary of $15 million. No one in Detroit, other than Magglio Ordonez, wants that to happen. Ordonez will be 37 next season and at this point in his career simply isn’t a good enough player to justify that kind of compensation. Despite a mild bounceback campaign thus far, players at Ordonez’s level (OPS of .885, bad defense) can be had for a third of the price, which is something that matters (or should) in Detroit.
This injury is essentially the team’s only hope of getting out of the rest of the contract. In a similar situation last season, when the Tigers were trying to avoid this year’s $18 million dollar option from vesting, the Tigers made a half-hearted attempt at benching Ordonez, only to have a threatened player’s union grievance put the matter to rest. Without a clear baseball reason to bench him, the team would likely be defeated in a hearing and be forced to pay Ordonez. In short, with a .300 average and 8 home runs, Ordonez isn’t bad enough to bench, but isn’t good enough to justify his salary.
Agree or disagree? Debate the logic over at SB Nation’s Bless You Boys.