After a very confusing 16 hour period in which Anibal Sanchez was signing with the Cubs then wasn’t signing with the Cubs, it appears that the Tigers – more specifically – Mike Ilitch – have won out. Multiple reports say that Detroit has re-signed Sanchez to a 5 year, $80 million contract.
Overpay? Yeah. That’s the same contract Justin Verlander is on right now (and if you want to feel sick to your stomach for a few moments, just imagine how much money HE’S going to want when that inevitably gets renegotiated), but such is the state of the market right now. This is a move that has Ilitch’s stamp all over it. He clearly wanted Sanchez, and he was willing to pay the price. When Ilitch zeroes in on someone, he usually finds a way to seal the deal. And never underestimate the insanity of the market…
How did this happen? It’s interesting to piece together. USA Today’s Bob Nightengale had the original report that the Cubs had sealed the Sanchez signing at 5 years and $75 million, a report that turned out to be premature; the Cubs thought they had a deal but apparently the Tigers were given the right to try and match, which they apparently did. Ken Rosenthal reported this morning that the Cubs had raised their offer to $77.5 million; shortly after, it was reported that they were out on Sanchez. Fair to assume that the Tigers bumped their offer to $80 million in response and the Cubs weren’t willing to go any higher than that.
This will have payroll ramifications later, but the ownership does not care about that right now; it’s World Series or bust, and this is just another statement to back that up.