Rightfully so, most are thinking about 2009 with Burrell, but that doesn't (nor should it) stop us from thinking about 2010. Using PECOTA (since 2006) and ZiPS comparables from previous years, I ran the FanGraphs age uh...graphs for each pair and Burrell. Let's just say I'm a little less encouraged about 2010's production than I was yesterday.
Almost every comparable player - including guys like John Jaha and most of those listed above - fell off, or at least declined, from age 32 to age 33. This is a trend, not a definite, and it's obviously quite possible that Burrell is an outlier who performs beyond age 32, 33, 34 and so forth. Unlikely, but possible. It's also worth mentioning that the wOBA is neither park or league adjusted.
What does this mean? Well, it supports the length of the contract for one. We knew players with "old people skills" declined at a faster rate than normal, and this simply verifies that line of thinking. Do I expect Burrell to collapse in 2010? Absolutely not, but the chance for one is perhaps higher for Burrell than any other player on the Rays roster.