There is no shortage of cautionary tales over the years when it comes to handing out megadeals in MLB free agency,. That will undoubtedly be in teams' minds this offseason as they explore signing the likes of Aaron Judge, Trea Turner, Carlos Correa and Xander Bogaerts.
While many of the ill-advised long-term deals handed out over the years have come and gone, there are still a handful on teams' books heading into the 2023 season.
Here, we've ranked the 10 worst contracts that teams are stuck with going forward, focusing on players with multiple years remaining on their current deal. The contracts were ranked based on remaining money owed, recent production and expected production going forward.
We'll start with a handful of bad contracts that are one or two years from the finish line.
Honorable Mentions: Almost Finished
There is not enough time or money remaining on these contracts for them to crack our top 10, but they're still worth a mention:
One Year Left on Contract
Miguel Cabrera, DET: $32 million
Brandon Crawford, SF: $16 million
Paul DeJong, STL: $9.2 million
Josh Donaldson, NYY: $21 million
Yasmani Grandal, CWS: $18.25 million
Mike Moustakas, CIN: $18 million
Joey Votto, CIN: $25 million
Two Years Left on Contract
Madison Bumgarner, ARI: $37 million
Hunter Dozier, KC: $16.75 million
James McCann, NYM: $24.3 million
Marcell Ozuna, ATL: $32 million (plus $1 million buyout on 2025 option)
10. 3B Yoán Moncada, Chicago White Sox
2023: $17.8 million
2024: $24.8 million
The Chicago White Sox signed Yoán Moncada to a five-year, $70 million extension following a breakout 2019 season where he hit .315/.367/.548 for a 140 OPS+ with 34 doubles, 25 home runs and 5.2 WAR in 132 games.
His performance has been up and down in the years since, and the 2022 season was a clear down. He hit only .212 with a 76 OPS+ and 0.9 WAR in 104 games while missing time with quad and hamstring injuries.
His batted-ball data provides little in the way of optimism, as his hard-hit rate (33rd percentile), average exit velocity (43rd percentile), xBA (12th percentile) and xwOBA (18th percentile were all well below his career marks.