Dodgers get Jones near his peak 

December, 6, 2007
12/06/07
10:56
AM ET
In a vacuum, this is an outstanding signing for the Dodgers. Had Andruw Jones had a season closer to his 2006 or 2005 performances, he would have been in line for a five- or six-year deal in the $100 million area.

Jones is still one of the best defensive center fielders in the game, and up until 2007 -- when he allegedly played with a hyper-extended elbow -- was good for an OBP near .350 and 30-40 homers every year. He's also about to turn 31, so he's still in or close to his prime as a hitter. And the Dodgers get the advantage of two of his peak or near-peak years without having to sign him into his mid- or late 30s.

The Dodgers, however, do not play in a vacuum. On the one hand, this could just be an acknowledgement that the Juan Pierre contract was one of the worst of our time, so the Dodgers are treating it as a sunken deal, which they should do. (This would make them the second team to do this with a bad center fielder signing from last winter, on the heels of the Angels' signing Torii Hunter two weeks ago after getting Gary Matthews Jr. the year before.)

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