Today the Chicago Cubs announced – officially – that they’d signed 23-year-old first baseman Anthony Rizzo to a seven-year extension, including 2013, which will keep him with the Cubs through 2019. The team also gets two option years, and more analysis of the signing can be found in the initial post this morning. The Cubs are having a press conference this afternoon at 3pm CT, where they will say nice things about Rizzo and he will say nice things about the Cubs. In between, hopefully we get some big picture commentary.
Jon Heyman today revealed the details of Rizzo’s deal, which will pay him as follows: a $2 million signing bonus, a bump to $750K this season, $1.25 million in 2014, $5 million in 2015, $5 million in 2016, $7 million in 2017, $7 million in 2018, $11 million in 2019, and then club options worth $14.5 million in each of 2020 and 2021. I’d imagine there’s a buyout attached to those options, but I’m not yet sure of the amount. (UPDATE: Thanks for the heads up, Spencer in the comments – it’s a $2 million buyout. That makes the guarantee $41 million – $39 million in salaries and the signing bonus, and the $2 million buyout. If both options are exercised, it’s $68 million for 9 seasons.)
All in all, a fine deal for both sides. The rates track typical arbitration raises (but on the team-friendly side), and give the Cubs a huge amount of flexibility in that critical 2015 to 2018 window. If Rizzo becomes a star in the middle of the lineup, having him locked in at just $5 and $7 million is going to help with that whole roster construction thing. That’s especially true if, as expected, the Cubs’ payroll has moved into the $130 to $140 million range at that time.
We’ll have a lot more on the extension this week as it is analyzed, re-analyzed, deconstructed, and reviewed.