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SB Nation: The Sad List Of The 10 Highest Paid Relievers


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And this is why I don't want to pay for relief pitchers.


4. Jim Johnson


One year, $10 million

Thought process of signing team

"We have to put this revenue-sharing money somewhere."

Did it work out?

No. Very no. So very no. The A's, who rarely hand out eight-figure contracts at all, much less to relievers, took a risk. It worked out about as well as the Ben Sheets contract years ago. The worst part is that it was an inspired move, just like the Sheets contract.

Like the Nationals up there, the A's didn't have five gaping holes on their roster. It turns out that Alberto Callaspo was about to disintegrate, and second base was going to be a true mess, but at the time, if the A's were itching to spend money, there was just one place to do it, other than the rotation. They paid a premium, but there were only so many ways for them to add more wins.

No, the worst part wasn't that it was an inspired move, but that it was exactly what the A's needed. The A's have been rotten with one-run losses lately. You know what would have helped? An extra bullpen arm and functional closer. Sean Doolittle moves back an inning, everyone else gets to ply their trade earlier in the game ... that's the sort of thing that would have helped the A's stop their slide a lot sooner. It should have worked, dang it.

And this list doesn't even include Balfour.

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