Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Ilya Kovalchuk will be a Devil for a long, long time. 17 more years, to be precise. The 27 year old stud winger signed a 17 year contract worth a total of $102 million. That only works out to be $6 million a year, on average, but the absurd length of the deal makes it worthwhile for him. He'll be receiving paychecks until he's 44. His actual salary will fluctuate up and down, peaking at $11.5 million for a 5 year stretch in the middle of the deal, and settling down to $550,000 a season at the end.
I get why Kovalchuk signed this deal. He's set for life. In my opinion, he could have gotten more salary for shorter years. But then there's a risk of being a 33 year old free agent that nobody wants because of injuries or lackluster performances. And $102 million ain't peanuts. Furthermore, he gets to play in a "big market" (at least close to one) that consistently fields competitive teams.
And while I think I understand what the Devils are thinking, I still think it's kind of crazy. He'll be drawing a $6.5 million salary in 2020. That's a long time from now. If this were Wayne Gretzky, it'd be the smartest signing in history. But as it is, the Devils have committed a lot of cap space for 17 years.
So if this is what Kovalchuk wanted, I'm glad the Bruins didn't even (apparently) place a bid. The Devils have a great scorer, and will have him for a long, long time.
Maybe Kovalchuk just wanted a deal that matched his uniform number (#17).
The Sox needed a great start from Daisuke last night, and they got one. He only allowed 2 hits and 2 walks in 6.2 innings, allowing the Sox to score only twice and still claim the victory.
Daisuke's been throwing strikes lately. 62 of his 89 pitches were strikes, and he started 19 of the 24 batters he faced with strikes. Then again, he threw 8 of his 27 balls in the 7th, which is partially why Francona pulled him for Bard. Call me old-fashioned, call me greedy, but it'd be nice if a starter could throw 100 pitches and go 7+ innings. How often is Daisuke under 90 pitches in the 7th? It's a shame not to be able to take advantage of that, and have him go 7 or 8 innings.
Then again, if it were a 4-1 game when he allowed a walk and a double in the 7th, Francona's leash may have been longer.
Bard had his 20th Hold (3rd most in baseball), and Papelbon recorded his 21st Save.
The Sox scored both their runs in the 4th, as Ortiz hit a sac-fly, and Beltre knocked out his 15th homer of the season. Ortiz and Beltre have 59 and 59 RBI, respectively.
Wakefield faces Dallas Braden late night tonight.