The deal is still not officially official (update, just announced!), but I’m guessing it will be soon if the contract particulars are coming out.
Here’s the full breakdown on the Cubs’ free agent deal for Japanese slugger Seiya Suzuki – which comes with a full no-trade clause – per Mark Feinsand:
2022: $7M (plus a $5M signing bonus)
As you can see, the deal is not significantly backloaded, but I’m sure you’re noticing that first year is extremely light (the signing bonus is not necessarily payable that first year). Before you get any super excited ideas about what that implies for the Cubs’ intentions in 2022, I would say it is probably only about two things: (1) revenues were still impacted last year, and I imagine the Cubs expect further uptick this year; and (2) the Cubs have to pay a posting fee of nearly $15 million.
For luxury tax purposes, the deal is treated as five years and $85 million, so a $17 million Average Annual Value. In theory, that’s the number that should matter most over the course of the deal, because we’re going to want to see the Cubs’ payroll trending back up toward the luxury tax level(s) over the coming years.
Welcome to the Chicago Cubs, Seiya Suzuki!
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) March 18, 2022