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SteveO

Does the DH rule give AL teams an advantage with big free agents.

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Seeing Albert sign with the Angels, I have to wonder if the big market, high revenue teams of the AL have an advantage over the National League teams who have similar resources when it comes to big dollar, high profile free agents. The DH rule does seem to give AL teams a way of getting production out a player like Pujols in the final few years of his contract that a national league team would be unlikely to see. This fact alone has to impact the ability and willingness of NL teams to be able to match those contract offers (length and money) with all else being equal. Think this is one of those things that is not talked about enough when considering the impact of the DH rule and modern baseball economics.

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I get what your saying but just don't see it. Maybe mid level guys would be more likely to sign as putting up better numbers in the national league is easier, thus setting up the next contract but established superstar pitchers are going to get paid in either league (hitters to for that matter). Just look at CJ Wilson, prime example, he went were the money is. Having a DH rule though does extend the career of premier hitters that's a fact, I see no evidence the lack of a DH lengthens the careers of pitchers to the extent that they feel more comfortable putting out more money. Having a DH rule enables an AL team to reasonably expect longer productivity for the money. The Angels can anticipate an extra year or two of productivity during that contract that St Louis cannot count on. This puts the Angels in a position to offer more money.

Edited by SteveO

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AL teams are certainly more comfortable in offering longer deals to hitters because if they have knee issues or back issues and can't play the field, they can just be a DH. So maybe Pujols breaks down after five years and can't play the field; they can still probably get a good amount of value from him as just a hitter. NL teams cannot be as comfortable with offering long-term deals without having that option.

It just comes down to risk. There is certainly more risk for NL teams when it comes down to long-term deals for hitters.

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