Cleat Geeks

The Contract Gamble

SalPerezAllStarThe Royals and Salvador Perez are having a quiet conference. Away from all the media, the Royals are negotiating a new contact for Perez. Why?

Well, the Royals did the contract gamble.

Betting and wagering of any kind is illegal in the game of baseball, and yet, every day teams gamble. Will this player be our next star? Will he tank? They hire scouts and read reports and watch practice after practice to see if this player is going to be the one. In the case of the Royals, in 2012, with only 34 days playing in the majors, the Royals signed Salvador Perez to a long-term contract: five years, $26.5 million, which, for a rookie, is huge money and to a team is a huge risk.

MLB: SEP 20 Tigers at RoyalsThe risk turned out to be a sound investment. At 25, Perez’s career stats are impressive .279/.306/.431. He has hit 69 home runs and has 279 RBIs. Behind the plate, an image of Pudge Rodriguez comes to mind. He has a fielding percentage of .993 and has caught 102 stealing. This past year, he caught 29 stealing, and that was 2nd in the American League. This makes a valid argument that he is one of the best catchers in the game of baseball.

While a jackpot for the team, for Perez it’s another story. Being one of the best catchers and knowing what other catchers and or players make, it can lead to feelings of discontent. Fans and media know the market worth of Perez, and questions have become so rampant that General Manager Dayton Moore had to field questions on the subject during a press conference.Salvador Perez poses with his trophy after being named the MVP of the Major League Baseball World Series. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

Should the Royals negotiate a new contract with Perez?

Yes, the Royals took a contract gamble and won, but now they have a great prize. And what does one do with such a prize? You take care of it. Giving Perez a contact worthy of his abilities is not only good for the team and Perez and fans’ morale. It’s just the right thing to do.

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