Lost in the midst of all the Alfonso Soriano hoopla is the contract Justin Speier just got from the Angels - $18m over four years. Speier's a perfectly fine righty, but he's 33 years old and good relievers don't tend to last very long, so this is wasteful at best and stupid at worst. If nothing else, it's interesting that Bill Stoneman's the GM who handed out this contract, considering he's the same guy who's built strong bullpens out of journeyman nobodies like Ben Weber, Brendan Donnelly, Al Levine, Lou Pote, and Scot Shields in recent seasons. I, for one, am completely in favor of Anaheim taking steps backwards.
Anyway, I don't really have anything to say about the Soriano deal that hasn't already been said by Dave or Adam Morris. Forget about years 6, 7, and 8 of this contract; I'd be pretty concerned about years 1, 2, and 3. This might be the worst contract in baseball history, and it's more than a little comforting knowing that the Mariners weren't the ones who gave it out.
This market is ridiculous. Run away, as fast as you can.
Update: there are rumblings that the last few years of Soriano's deal may be options, but even if that's true, ye gods. Still.