More often than not big time free agents flop or don't produce to the level they did with their previous team. Trying to buy a championship fails more often than it succeeds, just look at the Mets. Here is my list of the worst signings of alltime.
1) Barry Zito, Giants(7 years, 126 million)
Was pretty good with the A's, but has been mediocre at best across the bay with the Giants. He was no longer the Cy Young Award winning pitcher when he was up for free agency, but he was still a solid #2 starter. With the Giants he's been 43-61 with a 3.91 ERA and was left off the postseason roster during their 2010 championship.
2) Mike Hampton, Rockies(8 years, 121 million)
Said he went to Colorado because they had better schools for his children. Pitched 2 seasons with the Rockies compiling a 5.75 ERA and a 1.68 WHIP. He was then traded to the Braves, and was hurt for most of the last 4 years of his contract.
3) Alfonso Soriano, Cubs(8 years, 136 million)
This contract has been a albatross for the Cubs. He is no longer a stolen base threat, and his OBP was below .300 last season. His outfield defense is pretty bad as well. The Cubs are still on the hook for 3 more years of Soriano.
4) Chan Ho Park, Rangers(5 years, 65 million)
Was a pretty good pitcher with the Dodgers, but was awful with the Rangers posting a 5.79 ERA during his time there.
5) Mo Vaughn, Angels(6 years, 80 million)
Mo Vaughn had two good years with the Angels, but his body started breaking down after that. Most likely a steroid user he was out of the league before his contract ended. Luckily for the Angels, they were able to trade him after the 2001 season to the Mets for Kevin Appier who contributed to their 2002 championship.
6) Jason Schmidt, Dodgers(3 years, 47 million)
Alot of bad deals were signed after the 2006 season, and this is one of them. Schmidt barely pitched for the Dodgers because he was injured.
7) John Lackey, Red Sox(5 years, 82 million)
This might move up the list because he's only 2 seasons into the deal. So far, he's had a 5.26 ERA and a 1.50 WHIP with Boston and is going to miss next season because of Tommy John surgery. He'll have plenty of time to eat chicken wings and drink beer next year.
8) Denny Neagle, Rockies(5 years, 51 million)
Was signed along with Hampton after the 2000 season to bolster the Rockies rotation. However, Neagle was 19-23 with a 5.57 ERA in Colorado and was injury prone. His Rockies career ended when he was caught soliciting a prostitute in 2004.
9) Gary Matthews Jr., Angels(5 years, 50 million)
Made a amazing catch in 2006 with the Rangers and had a career year. But, during his first spring training with the Angels it came out he was getting HGH shipped to his house. He went back to being a 4th outfielder type with the Angels. Most expensive 4th outfielder ever.
10) Alex Rodriguez, Yankees(10 years, 275 million)
ARod decided to use the opt out clause in his contract after the 2007 season to get even more money. Even though he was 32 years old at the time, the Yankees still gave him 10 years. It came out in the second year of his deal he did steroids earlier in his career. His production has slipped from his prime years,and is more injury prone now. The Yankees still have 6 years remaining in this deal.
11) Darryl Strawberry, Dodgers(5 years, 22 million)
Only had one good season in LA, before injuries and cocaine abuse did him in. The Dodgers released him duing the 1994 season.
12) Dice K, Red Sox(6 years, 52 million)
The Sox paid 51 million just to get the rights to Dice K, then gave him a 52 million dollar contract. Had two good seasons before injuries hit him. Entering the final season of his deal next year and is recovering from Tommy John surgery.
13) Jason Bay, Mets(4 years, 66 million)
Bay has completely fallen off in New York, hitting only 18 home runs in two seasons after hitting 30 homers multiple times in the past.
14) Russ Ortiz, Diamondbacks(4 years, 33 million)
Ortiz was terrible in Arizona going 5-16 with a 7.00 ERA there. The Diamondbacks ended up releasing him with 2 plus years left in his deal because he was so bad.
15) Danny Tartabull, Yankees(5 years, 26 million)
One of the biggest contracts ever when he signed it, Tartabull was never the player he was in Kansas City. He only batted .252 in New York after batting .290 during his time with the Royals.