EXTENSIONS FOR EVERYBODY!*
*Cubs not included
We’ve seen this kind of deal before (Jonathan Singleton and the Astros, Scott Kingery and the Phillies), but they were much, much smaller, and the first one actually didn’t work out for the team. This, by contrast, feels like it could be extremely significant in the coming years of change in the league.
Superstar (former Cubs) prospect Eloy Jimenez is about to get paid before he even steps foot in the big leagues:
BREAKING NEWS: The White Sox are close to an agreement with Eloy Jimenez for an 8-year extension that would pay him between 65-70 US$ Million. With Incentives the contract could get to the 75-80 million Range. Source says deal is pending only a Physical.@z101digital @ZDeportes
— Héctor Gómez (@hgomez27) March 20, 2019
Outfielder Eloy Jimenez's deal with the Chicago White Sox will be for six years with two club options, sources familiar with the agreement tell ESPN. The final dollars are still be hammered out, but they'll be in the $40M guaranteed range. @hgomez27 and @dSoldevila are on it.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) March 20, 2019
We’ll see what the final contract looks like before we break it down, but the short version is that the White Sox already had seven years of team control in what amounted to seven straight options years. If Eloy busted at any point, they could cut bait, and they’d have spent only for what they received (essentially). Now, they’re going to guarantee him a significant chunk of change in exchange for one extra year of team control, and the ability to start the regular season with him on the big league roster and not have to do the service time games thing.
This is going to be an extremely rare deal, on which the White Sox are betting big that Jimenez will be a star in a few years, set to make huge, huge bucks in arbitration. By locking in his rate now, they could save a hundred million dollars over the life of this contract.
Or, they could guarantee Jimenez $40+ million and he’s a total bust.
Given just how good that bat is, I highly doubt he’s a total bust, though. Good for Eloy for locking in money just in case.
In any case, this is kinda fun, and it’s not something we’ve seen the Cubs seriously entertain. I’m fascinated to see how this plays out, and how Jimenez does in the big leagues. And I’ll promise to cry only periodically, thinking about how he was first with the Cubs.
UPDATE: Here’s the guarantee:
Eloy deal with #WhiteSox will be six years, $43M with two club options, source tells The Athletic.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) March 20, 2019