Blog Entry

Rockies agree to sign Michael Cuddyer

Posted on: December 16, 2011 10:29 am
Edited on: December 16, 2011 11:08 am
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By Matt Snyder


Free agent outfielder Michael Cuddyer has agreed to sign a three-year, $31.5 million contract with the Colorado Rockies, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com has learned. The final stages of the contract are currently being completed.

Cuddyer is an 11-year veteran and has only played for the Twins. But when the Twins and Cuddyer had two different figures in mind for a contract, the Twins went ahead and signed Josh Willingham, seemingly leaving no room for Cuddyer. The Rockies had been courting Cuddyer anyway, so when Willingham went to Minnesota, the door was open. Cuddyer had wanted at least $30 million over three years from the Twins -- who reportedly offered $25 million over three years -- so the Rockies came up with the figure needed. Minnesota, meanwhile, used $24 million in a three-year contract to net Willingham. 

Hot Stove
Cuddyer, 32, has played every position in a major-league game except shortstop and catcher. Yes, he's even pitched. But he's going to serve as a right fielder and first baseman for the Rockies. He'll become the everyday right fielder, while also spelling Todd Helton from time to time, likely eventually taking over for him.

The Rockies found Cuddyer to be a good fit both in terms of on-field performance and in the clubhouse. They were interested in Carlos Beltran as a backup plan, so he will now have to look elsewhere. Earlier this week, CBSSports.com's Scott Miller reported the Cardinals, Blue Jays and "at least two other unidentified clubs" are also interested in Beltran, so he's definitely not left out in the dark.

Cuddyer hit .284/.346/.459 with 20 homers, 70 RBI, 70 runs and 11 stolen bases last season. He made the All-Star team for the first time in his career, though he had very good seasons in 2006 and 2009 as well. He's not a marquee bat, but he doesn't have to be. The Rockies have Carlos Gonzalez and Troy Tulowitzki holding down the 3-4 spots in the order. We should also recognize that Cuddyer is moving from a pitcher's park in Target Field to Coors Field, which ranked as the top hitter's park in 2009-10 and second-best in 2011 behind Rangers Ballpark.

The move puts Gonzalez in left field and Seth Smith is now moved to the bench as the fourth outfielder. Smith has been mentioned throughout the offseason in trade rumors, so don't expect those to quiet down anytime soon.

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Comments

Since: Sep 3, 2007
Posted on: December 19, 2011 4:24 pm
 

Rockies agree to sign Michael Cuddyer

Thank God the Twins did not sign this guy again. He is the most un-clutch player that I have ever seen. He puts up numbers when they don't count. 

Yes, he is a great community guy, yes he is versatile and now you can add extremely overpaid to his resume. I will take Willingham and some extra money to add pitching any day of the week.

Rockies fans, Cuddyer will be in the top 5 in the league at grounding into double plays and he will amaze you with his inability to hit anything that breaks low and away.

Awesome job Terry Ryan for letting him walk!

Man, I couldn't agree with this comment any more than I do. Spot on!



Since: Jun 13, 2008
Posted on: December 19, 2011 4:15 pm
 

Rockies agree to sign Michael Cuddyer

I looked at Josh Willingham's stats from last year & I was a little surprised to see that he drove in 98RBI.I knew he struck out a lot but I didn't realize he'd struck out 150 times in 138gms.He also hit a MLB career low of 246,he's a 262 lifetime hitter.As far as Cuddyer,he's played so many positions in the last year that he's gonna be a fantasy target for that alone.Still I can't help but think that he was paid a hell of a lot of money.He's averaging $10.5Mil per year for the 3 years.I was surprised that Cuddyer hit 20HRs to go along with his 70/70 year with RBI & Runs.I'm reading that he'll be the everyday RF & spell Todd Helton on occasion as a RH hitting 1B.I have to be truthful & admit I didn't realize he had such a strong a prescence as he had in the Twins clubhouse.I'm not implying that they're cheap but Minnesota is not the type of organization that's going to throw money at you so I can't say I'm surprised they didn't come to an agreement.As has been mentioned in the above article he goes from a climate that can stay cold late into spring to another city that stays cold into spring but is a mile above sea level which makes the air thin & the ball fly.I think he'll get his share of doubles to go along with 20+HRs & 70+RBI.I didn't make the Fantasy Football Playoffs & despite the fact that I'm still following football,I cannot wait until the Fantasy Baseball Drafts.



Since: Jun 24, 2010
Posted on: December 19, 2011 1:36 pm
 

Rockies agree to sign Michael Cuddyer

I'm a Giants fan, and before we got Melky Cabrera and Angel Pagan, I was all for them signing Cuddyer.  He's a professional hitter...very solid and consistent.  He should hit very well in Coors field.  I think this is a good signing by the Rockies...besides typically hitting for a good avg. he's also a good RBI man. 




Since: Jun 21, 2009
Posted on: December 18, 2011 5:43 pm
 

Rockies agree to sign Michael Cuddyer

I've seen him play here when he was @ AAA in Rochester NY(Rochester Red Wings .. Twins AAA affiliate). I thought he would be a GR8 fit in Boston as well but the Rockies REALLY wanted him....and got him.....Coors field should HELP his numbers as well.He's versatile and can be a GR8 clubhouse and community presence..best of luck to Michael...Too bad Twins wouldnt offer a couple more MIL over 3 years..Willingham got 3/24MIL and isnt nearly as good a player.Twins should have ponied up to keep a better player.
'A couple more' million dollars for a 'clubhouse and community prescence'? Are you insane? Don't answer that. The Rockies signed Cuddyer for 50% more than what the Twins are paying Willingham (which is listed in this article as $24 million but everywhere else I've seen $21 million). Offensively, based on stats there's not much difference between the two players. Both are the same age. Cuddyer hasn't had to face the superior level of pitching in the NL, so I'd expect his stats to go DOWN in Colorado. By way of comparison, you'll notice that Willingham had generally better stats playing in the AL than he did in the NL, in spite of doing so in a home park in Oakland that notoriously favors pitching.

Again, great move by the Twins to replace Cuddyer with Willingham. If they want to improve the clubhouse or community they can do a lot better with that $3.5 million a year than pay it to a player of Cuddyer's ability.



Since: Dec 15, 2006
Posted on: December 18, 2011 8:10 am
 

Rockies agree to sign Michael Cuddyer

I agree GUYWITHOPINION.I've seen him play here when he was @ AAA in Rochester NY(Rochester Red Wings .. Twins AAA affiliate). I thought he would be a GR8 fit in Boston as well but the Rockies REALLY wanted him....and got him.....Coors field should HELP his numbers as well.He's versatile and can be a GR8 clubhouse and community presence..best of luck to Michael...Too bad Twins wouldnt offer a couple more MIL over 3 years..Willingham got 3/24MIL and isnt nearly as good a player.Twins should have ponied up to keep a better player.


Buffalo Bob
Since: Dec 11, 2011
Posted on: December 17, 2011 4:33 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator




Since: Oct 8, 2011
Posted on: December 17, 2011 3:58 pm
 

Rockies agree to sign Michael Cuddyer

you see SPartIe the TwInS fAnS CoULd cArE LeSs iF tHiS gUy WaLKs or StaYs



Since: Jun 21, 2009
Posted on: December 17, 2011 2:58 pm
 

Rockies agree to sign Michael Cuddyer

A statue? He's barely above average, no chance he gets even voted into the Twins hall of fame, surely not a statue.


His kids could run for congress? Are you just making it up as you go?
Sorry, I thought this was an another article about Albert Pujols signing with Anaheim. I had noticed that Cuddyer had spent his whole career with the same team and was leaving for a big raise over what the old team offered; I didn't realize this was something other players besides Pujols did.

Josh Willingham is actually a month older than Michael Cuddyer.
That's true, officially. Of course we don't really know about Cuddyer's age- he was born in Virginia, and you know they are with birth records there. He's probably closer to 35 or 36 than his stated age of 32. Oh, wait, I got confused; was thinking about the Pujols comments again. It's hard to keep things straight when there's a double standard...



Since: Apr 13, 2009
Posted on: December 17, 2011 2:49 pm
 

Rockies agree to sign Michael Cuddyer

Thank God the Twins did not sign this guy again. He is the most un-clutch player that I have ever seen. He puts up numbers when they don't count.

Yes, he is a great community guy, yes he is versatile and now you can add extremely overpaid to his resume. I will take Willingham and some extra money to add pitching any day of the week.

Rockies fans, Cuddyer will be in the top 5 in the league at grounding into double plays and he will amaze you with his inability to hit anything that breaks low and away.

Awesome job Terry Ryan for letting him walk!



Since: Oct 23, 2010
Posted on: December 17, 2011 2:49 pm
 

Perfect Fit

Cuddyer is a great addition to this team;  they'll get a veteran hitter and a great guy in the club house. Not to mention, Cuddyer is a big time playoff veteran; 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006, 2009, 2010. A couple of years ago he belted 32 hrs and 94 RBI, I wonder if those stats will change any up in Denver with that thin air.

Dante Bichettes stats went from sub-par to MVP caliber when he started playing in Colorodo. He  was an average hitter for 5 years in the American league with the Angels and Brewers (before they went back to the national league), he averaged .250, and never hit more than 15 HR's. In his 6th year in the major leagues he moved to Colorodo. for the next 7 years he averaged 29 hr's, .314 BA and finished 2nd in NL MVP in 1995.

I think Cuddyer will continue to be an asset and likely have improved stats this year if he stays healthy. Who knows... MVP?


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com