Listing the 25 most overpaid MLB players in 2023, from future Hall of Famers to surprise names

Jul 25, 2023; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Los Angeles Angles center fielder Mike Trout (27) sits in dugout in the second inning against the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 25, 2023; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Los Angeles Angles center fielder Mike Trout (27) sits in dugout in the second inning against the Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports /
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Carlos Rodon. Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Carlos Rodon. Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports /

23. Carlos Rodon, starting pitcher, New York Yankees

Rodon was 14-8 with a 2.88 ERA in 31 starts for the San Francisco Giants in 2022. That was sufficient reason for the Yankees this past winter to offer him about $150 million to pitch for them through 2028.

The signing got big headlines among World Series-hungry Yankee fans because Rodon, 30, was seen as the piece that solidified a rotation already including Gerrit Cole, Luis Severino and Nestor Cortes.

But signing pitchers to long-term deals is always dicey for both health and performance reasons. In Rodon’s case, both of those reasons have come into play in 2023.

During spring training, Rodon was diagnosed with a ‘mild’ forearm strain. How mild? Not very, as it turned out; that forearm strain kept Rodon sidelined through June.

And when he finally did debut – on July 7 against the Cubs – Rodon did not look like the fulfillment of Yankee fans’ hopes. He got beat by the Cubs, got roughed up in his next start against the Colorado Rockies, and through four appearances is just 1-3 with a 5.75 ERA.

The Yankees are paying Rodon $22.833 million this season, presumably on the assumption that he will do better than that…and soon. He did look better in his fourth start, lasting into the sixth inning Wednesday against the Mets and beating them 3-1.

But that still leaves Rodon with a 0.0 WAR for the season, which means he is presently being overpaid to the full tune of his $22.833 million salary.