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Edwin Jackson’s Contract May Be Worst in MLB


Last off-season, the Chicago Cubs signed SP Edwin Jackson to a four-year, $52 million contract that included an $8 million signing bonus. Jackson is set to receive $13 million this season, and now that deal is looking like one of the worst in the entire MLB.

Last season, Jackson lost an astounding 18 games, while being unable to hit double digits in win, with eight. His 4.98 ERA was among the worst in the entire MLB. He also allowed three walks and 10 hits per nine innings pitched. Jackson was one of the worst pitchers in all of baseball, which makes any contract in the eight-figures horrible.

Looking around the MLB, there are plenty of horrible contracts. Two Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim players come to mind: Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton. Pujols is set to receive $23 million this season. Pujols has 47 home runs and has a .275 average in two seasons with the Angels. Pujols hit at least 47 home runs in a season twice with the St. Louis Cardinals, and had a careeer average of .328 before his move. His number aren’t horrible, but we’re used to more from the greatest hitter of our generation, yes it would be tough to argue that he is not the greatest hitter of our generation, and the price tag should yield more production. Hamilton is a former MVP and five-time all-star. Last off-season he signed with the Angels and put up his worst season statistically, hitting 21 home runs and putting up a .250 batting average. These two players combine for $40 million.

Ryan Howard of the Philadelphia Phillies is another horrible contract, as he is paid $25 million per season. Howard has been unable to play more than 80 games the past two seasons, and isn’t the same player he used to be even when on the field. In 2006, Howard hit 58 home runs and batted .313 on his way to winning MVP. In 2012, he batted only .218.

Just across town, Adam Dunn sits with a $15 million contract. In three full season with the White Sox, Dunn has a .197 batting average and 588 strikeouts. Those numbers are atrocious, and Sox fans know this.

But through all of those stats, Jackson’s contract still sticks out to me as worst. He more than doubles the salary of any other Cubs player. Also, he was never a star player, always just an end-of-the-rotation pitcher who you hoped would give you six innings.

But the most important point is this, all of these players still contribute to their team. Pujols and Hamilton both still hit well, just not up to their standards. Howard is oft-injured, yet still averages 30+ home runs over a 162 game season. The White Sox knew what they were getting in Dunn, and he has hit home runs for the team, which is exactly what he gets paid for. Jackson contributes nothing.

Do you think Edwin Jackson has the worst contract in baseball? Let me know in the comment section below.

Tags: Chicago Cubs Contracts Edwin Jackson Popular

  • Robert

    Totally wrong. Jackson’s $13M is right around the minimal qualifying offer for impending free agents, and while high for the Cubs, is about as low an AAV as you’re gonna see any FA starter sign for. The Cubs signed Jackson not to be a front of the rotation starter, but to be an innings-eater, which he did in ’13 while staying healthy (as usual) and racking up 31 starts and 175 IP. Sure, his ’13 season was disappointing with 18 losses and an ERA of almost 5, but there is reason to believe that he will be better than that this season, more in line with his career numbers and closer to a 4 ERA, possibly getting 10-12 Wins, depending on the offense and bullpen. Jackson will be worth a solid 2 WAR.