Actually, we think that the one-year, $4.8 million contract negotiated this week is pretty prudent of the Blue Jays' brass. Ultimately, they still have Rios under their control until the end of next season, so it doesn't make much sense to blow out the budget on him quite yet.
We thought the way the contract was structured was a bit peculiar, with Rios getting a base salary of $1.3 million and a $3.5 million signing bonus, but we're in no way an expert on how Uncle Ted wants to establish his payroll structure. What's the advantage of having so much tied in to signing bonuses? Maybe it's a tax thing?
A handy comparison
Two Blue Jays beat writers on the Rios contract putting the club at or over a $100 million payroll: