Because there is no salary cap in baseball, players can sign contracts for nearly as much money as they think they deserve, and they are almost always willing to wait things out--just look at this offseason for a quick primer.
Due to the lack of a salary cap, some players simply end up with far more money than they need because someone was desperate enough to fill a hole. Here are the six most grossly overpaid guys in the bigs.
6. Troy Tulowitzki
Don't get me wrong, Tulo is great shortstop, but his offensive production in recent years does not support his salary.
Since making the move to Toronto, Tulo has not hit above .260. For a guy who was used to seeing his number reach and even rise above .300, that is not what Toronto paid for. In 2018, the shortstop is making $20 million dollars as part of a $157.75 million contract.
Unfortunately for the Jays, they are seriously overpaying for Tulowitzki.
5. Jason Heyward
Jason Heyward was once one of baseball's top prospects. Unfortunately, he never really flourished in the bigs.
In 2016, the Cubs signed Heyward to a contract worth $184 million. In 2018 he is going to make a little over $26 million. For a guy who has only hit above .270 twice since 2010, can't hit homers, and barely knocks in runs, this seems like way too high a price.
Nice World Series rain delay speech, though.
4. Hanley Ramirez
This one is really coming back to hurt the Red Sox.
Since 2012, Hanley Ramirez has only reached 70 RBI twice and has only hit above .270 three times. This year Ramirez is going to make $22.75 million, and the guy might not even start. If the Sox sign J.D. Martinez, Ramirez will not see the field too often by any means.
Boy, I would love to make $22.75 million to travel the country and sit on a bench for a few hours every night.
3. Joe Mauer
Mauer used to be the game's best catcher without question, but since 2013, he has mostly played first base and hasn't shined quite so brightly.
The Twins extended his contract in 2011 for eight years and $184 million. Just to compare, Mike Trout is making $40 million less than Joe Mauer. Yes, the former catcher used to routinely hit above .300--heck, he even hit above .320--but he simply does not do that anymore. He also used to knock in far more runs.
The Twins took a risk with their money to keep a hometown guy happy, and unfortunately, they failed.
2. Chris Davis
Oh, the Orioles made a mistake with a high-dollar contract? Weird!
Chris Davis signed a seven-year extension with the Orioles in 2016. That extension is worth $161 million; again, more than Mike Trout. All the guy does is hit home runs, but even his dinger totals have dropped in each of the past three seasons. He also strikes out...ALL OF THE TIME. In 2016, the year he signed his extension, he struck out a career high 219 times.
Yes, chalk it up as an error in judgment for the O's for sure.
1. Albert Pujols
I still have no idea why the Angels gave Pujols the contract they did.
At the age of 32, Pujols signed a 10-year deal with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The contract is worth $240 million. The only other player who has a contract worth more and a higher 2018 salary is Miguel Cabrera.
Pujols' contract is even higher than Joey Votto's. Cabrera rightly-so has a bigger contract, but Votto should without a doubt be getting paid more than the aging Pujols. Guess that's what happens when you're coming off a three-homer game in a World Series and you've cornered an owner willing to make a splash, with money signs blocking his logic sensors.