If You Trade for Manny Machado, Don't Count on Signing Him to an Extension Right Away

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If You Trade for Manny Machado, Don’t Count on Signing Him to an Extension Right Away

Chicago Cubs

Even before Corey Seager went down for the year, opening up a new big-market trade partner for the Orioles, the Manny Machado rumors were kicking up.

The Orioles are terrible, Machado is a looming and pricey free agent, and he’s going to command a haul in trade at some point this year. So he will be moved. The only questions are where and when, and the Cubs (surprisingly, in my view) were getting quite a bit of continued hype as an in-season trade partner.

My short-version take? There are circumstances where I could see the Cubs becoming players for Machado in free agency after the season, but an in-season trade is much less likely.

That said, what if Machado never reaches free agency? What if he’s traded, and then inks up a monster extension right away with his new team? Is that what the Dodgers might try to do? They’ve certainly got the money, especially once they are willing to go back over the luxury tax cap after this season.

Well, don’t count on it – for the Dodgers or any other team that might trade for Machado.

“Everyone has waited for the time to become a free agent,” Machado told the LA Times, which notes that he would not be into a negotiating window to agree on an extension in tandem with a trade. “You want to go out there and explore your options …. There’s a price for everything. At the end of the day, we just wanted to be treated fairly and get what we deserve.”

In other words, sure, Machado will consider an extension with his new club after a trade, but don’t expect it to happen. He’s going to get to free agency and see what’s what, as he should. The 25-year-old shortstop is having another huge year, and figures to land among the biggest – if not *the* biggest – contracts in baseball history.

That said, being the team that ultimately trades for Machado probably will have some slight additional value when it comes to free agency. No, not because having that early time to negotiate is valuable (again: dude’s going to free agency). Instead, it’s because the team gets a few months of having Machado in-house to show him what life is like there, to plant the seeds of how great it would be to sign there long-term. And then, when free agency arrives, that courting process is improved.

(Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images)


Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.