7:06pm: SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo tweets that the two sides are discussing a two-year, $10.25MM contract that contains an option for a third season. With that information now coming to light, it appears that the Rays will indeed secure an extra year of control over Forsythe if the deal is finalized. Cotillo noted back in November that there was mutual interest in working out an extension of sorts.
6:37pm: The Rays and second baseman Logan Forsythe are closing in on a two-year contract, according to Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times (Twitter link). Per Topkin, the contract would guarantee Forsythe, a client of PSI Sports Management, more than $9MM (Twitter link). Forsythe was arbitration eligible this winter and had been projected by MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz to earn $3.3MM in 2016. A two-year deal would buy out the remaining two years of his arbitration eligibility.
If completed, the contract would serve as a birthday gift for Forsythe, who turns 29 years old today. Acquired from the Padres alongside Brad Boxberger in a seven-player trade that sent Jesse Hahn to San Diego, Forsythe struggled considerably in his first season with Tampa Bay before breaking out in 2015. This past season, he batted .281/.359/.444 with career-highs in virtually every category, including games played (153), plate appearances (615) and home runs (17).
The contract in question wouldn’t extend the Rays’ control over Forsythe, but it would provide the team with cost certainty going forward — an element that is more crucial to a budget-conscious club like Tampa Bay than to many others. From Forsythe’s vantage point, he’ll gain the security of a larger payday now at the cost of some potential earning capacity in the event that he repeats his 2015 breakout. However, if he’s able to replicate last year’s stellar production, he’ll be poised to hit the open market as a highly desirable infield option following the 2017 season, at which point he’d be compensated quite well heading into his age-31 season.