The move that the LA Angels and the entire MLB world had been waiting for finally happened, as one of the top two free agents in this year’s class has finally signed.
Manny Machado will not be playing for the LA Angels, but he sure will be close by. The super star shortstop reached a deal with the San Diego Padres on Tuesday, per Jeff Passan of ESPN. The deal is for a reported ten years, for a grand total of $300 million, and an opt-out clause after the fifth season.
Machado’s contract is the largest free agent contract in any American sport, ever. In the MLB, it ranks second in total contracts, as Giancarlo Stanton‘s extension, originally with the Miami Marlins, was worth $325 million total.
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But for Angels fans, the only thing that really matters with this contract is what it means for the organization and Mike Trout. The obvious speculation this winter was that the Angels, who reportedly are ready to offer Trout a blank check/lifetime deal, would wait until Bryce Harper and/or Manny Machado signed with teams. Following those deals, the organization would make Mike Trout the highest paid player in the league, topping the deals of Harper and Machado.
With one domino falling and the other likely not far behind, we can try to predict what type of money Trout would earn. Per FanGraphs, Trout has been worth an average of $69.7 million per each of the full seasons he has played.
This does not need to be said, but Trout will 100% earn more per-year than any free agent in the history of the MLB. The record right now is $34.416 million to Zack Grienke. It would not be out of the question for Mike Trout to hit the $40 million per year threshold, in fact that might just be the starting point. And according the FanGraphs’ calculations, Trout would still be a bargain at that price.
The bigger and more interesting question for Trout is how long of a deal he gets. While Harper and Machado are both 26, Trout will be 29 by the time his current contract ends and an extension/new deal would start. That does add a complicating factor into it, but Trout has a skill set and the talent to be as productive well into his 30’s. Even if he is signed to a ten-year, $400 million contract/extension, if he regresses in the final three years or so, the overall value of the deal would still be a steal for the organization.
Machado’s contract, for him, was well worth the wait this offseason. For Bryce Harper, he’ll be thankful Machado signed first, as he and his agent Scott Boras surely won’t take a deal for less. And this year, next offseason, or (please not this one) even as a free agent in 2020, Mike Trout will base his next contract off this historic deal.