The last week in MLB was about a team in the American League signing a young player to a long-term deal, a club in the National League goes on a spending spree, a team signs an outfielder to an extension, and an infielder signs an enormous deal.
Tampa Bay Rays Sign Shortstop Wander Franco to Mega Extension
Wander Franco is gonna be with us for a long time pic.twitter.com/HQehPTBriS
— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) November 27, 2021
The Tampa Bay Rays have signed shortstop Wander Franco to an 11-year, $182-million contract, including a club option for the 2033 MLB season.
According to a team announcement, the deal can be worth up to $233 million if the club option is exercised and incentives are reached.
The Tampa Bay Rays have signed shortstop Wander Franco to an 11-year contract through the 2032 season, including a club option for the 2033 season. pic.twitter.com/aGwReZQMgE
— Rays Communications (@RaysPR) November 27, 2021
The contract for Franco is the biggest in the franchise for the Rays and the largest deal in MLB history for a player with less than a year of major league service time.
Franco made his debut June 22 and belted a three-run home run, which was a sign of terrific things to come.
He played in 70 games for the Rays, compiled a .288 batting average and .810 OPS with 53 runs scored, 81 hits, 18 doubles, five triples, seven home runs, and 39 RBIs.
He had a 43-game on-base streak to tie Cincinnati’s Frank Robinson (1956) for the longest in history among players under 21.
Franco has a bright future with the club, and it was a smart move by the front office of the Rays to sign him.
New York Mets Sign Marte, Canha, And Escobar to Multi-Year Deals
The New York Mets went on a spending spree a couple of days ago as they signed outfielder Starling Marte to a four-year, $78 million deal, per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.
Source confirms: Mets, Starling Marte in agreement on a four-year, $78M free-agent contract. First reported: @JonHeyman.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) November 27, 2021
The club also signed third baseman Eduardo Escobar to a two-year, $20-million contract, and outfielder Mark Canha to a two-year, $26.5 million deal, says Rosenthal.
Source confirms: Mets in agreement with free-agent infielder Eduardo Escobar on two-year, $20M contract. Can play 2B or 3B. Pending physical. First: @JonHeyman.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) November 26, 2021
Here are Canha’s values the past four seasons according to Fangraphs’ dollars metric, which is WAR converted to a dollar scale based on what a player would earn in free agency:
‘20: $13.9M (short season)
Agreement with Mets: 2 yrs/$26.5M
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) November 27, 2021
Marte was one of the best free-agent outfielders available and is coming off a fantastic 2021 campaign.
He posted a .310 average and .841 OPS in 120 games with 27 doubles, three triples, 12 home runs, 55 RBIs, and 47 stolen bases split between the Miami Marlins and Oakland Athletics.
Escobar hit .253 with 28 home runs last season in 146 games between the Milwaukee Brewers and Arizona Diamondbacks.
Canha had a .746 OPS in 141 games with 17 home runs and 61 RBIs with the Athletics last season.
The three additions by the Mets were solid, and they will probably focus on bolstering their starting rotation.
Minnesota Twins Sign Outfielder Byron Buxton to Seven-Year, $100-Million Extension
The Minnesota Twins have signed outfielder Byron Buxton to a seven-year, $100-million contract extension.
The deal includes MVP bonuses, plate appearance incentives, and a full no-trade clause, per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.
$1M signing bonus.
2023-28-$15M per season
MVP bonuses, believed to be unprecedented, for every year of deal.
Also: $500K each for 502, 533, 567, 600 and 625 plate appearances. https://t.co/leTEjfa4wR
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) November 28, 2021
Buxton was phenomenal last season when he was healthy, as he posted a .306 average and 1.005 OPS in 61 games with 50 runs scored, 23 doubles, 19 home runs, 32 RBIs, and nine stolen bases.
He was injured much of the season due to a fractured hand and hip strain.
Buxton has had issues remaining on the field, but he is one of the better players in MLB when healthy.
The deal carries risk for the Twins given the injury history of Buxton, but it could be a bargain if Buxton can remain healthy.
Texas Rangers Sign Infielder Marcus Semien to Seven-Year, $175-Million contract
The Texas Rangers have signed infielder Marcus Semien to a seven-year, $175 million contract, per Jeff Passan of ESPN.
The Rangers aren't done. Even though they got Marcus Semien, they're still in the Trevor Story sweepstakes. They went into this winter with money to spend, they got a whole lot better with Semien and now they're targeting more offense as well as starting pitching.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) November 28, 2021
Semien is coming off a 2021 season in which he finished third in the American League MVP voting.
He posted a .265 average and .873 OPS in 162 games with 115 runs scored, 173 hits, 39 doubles, 45 home runs, 102 RBIs, and 15 stolen bases with the Toronto Blue Jays last season.
Semien will provide a significant boost to the Rangers’ lineup as he is a tremendous hitter.
- Chris is a 29-year old New Jersey native whose favorite sports team is the Arizona Diamondbacks. He previously attended Western New England College to study Sports Management. Chris has been following the Diamondbacks since he was 12. You can find him on Twitter at @aecanada12.
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