MLB is in a little predicament: Ryan Braun has been suspended for the rest of the season, and Alex Rodriguez might be joining him soon for breaking MLB’s drug policy for using PEDs.
PED users like the Milwaukee Brewers star are obviously a reason for what’s wrong with MLB today, but players with long contracts like A-Rod and Los Angeles Angels first baseman Albert Pujols are another reason. Yep, Rodriguez makes this list too.
Not only has Rodriguez caused Bud Selig and MLB a lot of pain, he’s also done the same to the New York Yankees, who still owe him $86 million over the next four seasons. Worst of all, they have no idea if A-Rod will ever play again, as a combination of injuries and potential suspensions will make it tough for him to come back.
That didn’t stop the Angels from ignoring what should have been a lesson learned, though.
Pujols hasn’t even gotten out of the second year of his 10-year, $210 million contract, and he’s already become an everyday DH. Not only is he not playing the field, but his stats have already taken a major decline. Pujols started last season horribly, and hasn’t been any better this year.
The slugger has a .254 batting average, 17 home runs and 59 RBIs in 2013. For a .321 career hitter who used to put up perennial MVP-worthy numbers, that is horrible. Unless Pujols can figure things out, the Angels are going to be in some in deep trouble, and will end up in the same situation the Yankees are in with A-Rod right now.
Actually, it maybe worse than that because Pujols still has about eight years left on his contract.
PEDs have ruined baseball. Fans can’t appreciate talent without asking “is he using steroids?” We can’t watch what Chris Davis and Yasiel Puig have done this season without that question going through our minds.
Yet, it’s the long 10-year contracts that’s killing teams around the league. Teams need to be smarter with their money, and not set themselves back for years at a time by throwing it away for short-term gains.
You can follow Reece Helms on Twitter at: @Reece_Helms