The San Fransisco Giants agreed to a huge contract with right-hander Matt Cain last week and the groundbreaking deal is one of the largest ever for a pitcher.
The move is necessary for San Francisco to compete short-term, but it will end up costing the Giants more than they ever could have bargained for.
There is no denying that Cain is a top-level pitcher. He is only 27 and could have some very good seasons for the duration of the deal, but throwing money at pitchers is always a crap shoot.
Arm injuries and ineffectiveness all occur at some time or another for most major league throwers and giving big money to a pitcher like Cain almost never pays off. He is young and talented, but also a risk—like so many others before him.
Here are some examples of pitchers who were rewarded with big contracts, only to end up being bad investments for their respective teams.