Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Free Agent Watch: Paul Maholm

The Pirates decided today that they would not pick up starting pitcher Paul Maholm's contract option of $9.75 Million dollars. Maholm registered a 2.6 WAR in 2011, and according to the Halladay Standard that would be worth $7.8 million (better than his 6.25 million dollar salary in '11). Maholm has averaged a 1.5 WAR over the past 3 seasons and 1.56 WAR a year for his career. This would be worth about $4.8 million a year. He has a career TR of 8.84, about equal to Dontrelle Willis' 2011 season. That is profoundly mediocre. His PE is a career 3, and that is simply not very good. His FIP and ERA were basically the same in 2011, but his BABIP was much lower than usual. This may mean he was lucky, and that is how he was better in 2011 than the previous 2 years. He has been unable to throw more than 200 innings any year over the past 3 years, meaning he has had injury problems and/or has been able to go deep into games. That should make people run away from giving him big money. He doesn't "miss bats" (gives up lots of contact), and that should worry people. He is a decent, but not great, at getting groundballs, and the Pirates' terrible teams over the years have hurt him slightly, but not as much as one would think according to FIP. I would certainly give a very lowball offer for Maholm, but I wouldn't be terribly surprised if a team like the Yankees, Mets, or Red Sox overpaid for Maholm.

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