The Nationals offered superstar outfielder Juan Soto a 13-year, $350MM contract extension before the start of the lockout, reports Enrique Rojas of ESPN (Spanish-language link). Soto confirmed the team made him a long-term offer but tells Rojas he and his agents at the Boras Corporation prefer to proceed year-by-year via arbitration. He remains under club control through 2024, giving him three more seasons before hitting the open market.
According to Rojas, the offer did not contain any deferrals and would have gone into effect for the upcoming season had Soto accepted. The Nats have deferred payments in many of their recent big-ticket signings. Each of Max Scherzer, Patrick Corbin and Stephen Strasburg, for instance, agreed to push a substantial portion of their earnings beyond the term of the contract. That reduced the present-day value of those deals, but the offer to Soto would not have had the same effect. The specific payout structure of the offer is unclear, but overall, it included an average annual value just south of $27MM through the 2034 campaign.
Some fans will surely bristle at the notion of Soto leaving $350MM on the table. It’s obviously a life-changing sum of money, and it’d have gone down as the third-largest guarantee (before accounting for inflation) in MLB history. However, a deeper look at Soto’s situation makes it unsurprising that wasn’t enough to forego the possibility of an even more lucrative payday down the line.
Soto already has a strong amount of financial security, lessening his incentive to forego future earning power for up-front payments. He reached arbitration early as a Super Two qualifier last offseason, eventually agreeing to an $8.5MM salary for 2021. MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz projects him to earn around $16.2MM during his second trip through the process this year. That’s nearly $25MM that Soto has all but already earned.
Assuming he continues to perform as one of the league’s best players, Soto will see significant jumps in each of his final two arbitration seasons. He could approach or top the $27MM per-year salary the Nationals offered on the extension by his final year of arbitration. Mookie Betts’ $27MM agreement over the 2020-21 offseason is the largest ever for an arbitration-eligible player, and Soto’s Super Two qualification gives him a higher jumping-off point for future earnings than Betts had at the time.
As another frame of reference, take the 14-year, $340MM extension Fernando Tatís Jr. signed with the Padres last February. Soto’s deal narrowly tops that marker, but he’s negotiating from a greater position of financial strength. Tatís was four years from free agency at the time he signed his extension; Soto is currently three years away. And Tatís had not qualified for Super Two, so he was still a season from his first significant arbitration payment. Soto, as mentioned, has already banked $8.5MM and is in line for nearly double that amount this year. If one viewed Soto and Tatís as similarly valuable players, it’s hardly surprising the former’s comparatively stronger negotiating position set him up to decline a guarantee $10MM north of Tatís’ deal.
One can argue about precisely where Soto fits in discussion for the greatest players in the sport, but there’s no doubt he’s among the top few. He’s been one of the game’s best hitters from the moment he debuted as a 19-year-old in May 2018. Soto’s offensive production has checked in at least 43 percentage points above the league average, by measure of wRC+, in all four of his MLB seasons. He’s particularly taken off over the past couple years, posting numbers that look like they’re from a video game.
Since the start of the 2020 season, Soto has hit .322/.471/.572 across 850 plate appearances. He’s walked in an absurd 21.9% of his trips while striking out just 14.2% of the time, showcasing the sport’s best strike zone awareness. Among qualified hitters, only defending NL MVP Bryce Harper (.426) has an OBP within 50 points of Soto’s mark. Soto trails just Trea Turner (.330) in batting average, while Tatís (.598) and Harper (.594) are the only two batters with better slugging figures.
Soto has done all this as an astoundingly young player. He turned 23 last October, setting himself up to reach free agency in advance of his age-26 campaign. Thus it’s no surprise he’s viewed by most as being on a path towards at least baseball’s first $400MM contract, and it’s plausible he could top $500MM on the open market. Scherzer topped the $40MM average annual value mark this winter (by a wide margin, at $43.33MM). A $40MM AAV over a 13-year term — which would “only” run through Soto’s age-38 season — would mean a $520MM guarantee, for instance.
There’s plenty of time before free agency comes into focus for Soto, but he and agent Scott Boras are no doubt keenly aware of the chance he has at setting contractual milestones. Soto told Rojas he still envisions himself spending his entire career in Washington, but it seems his current plan is to allow the next few seasons to play out in hopes of getting to the open market. After kicking off an organizational retool at last summer’s trade deadline, it remains to be seen how quickly the Nats plan to install another competitive roster around Soto in hopes of capturing their second World Series title of his tenure.
That is one heck of a gamble kid. Hope it works out for you!
Fever Pitch Guy
Yeah I hope this isn’t another situation of Boras steering a player wrong.
Sure, if during the next three years Soto stays healthy and continues to be as productive then he could possibly land the first $500M contract.
Those are mighty big ifs though, it didn’t take long for health concerns to surround Tatis, Mookie and Trout after they signed mega-deals.
Maybe he doesn’t want to play there. Maybe it’s more about location than money.
Fever Pitch Guy
“It’s not about the money” – Former Angel Mo Vaughn
“It’s not about the money”… Former Angel Jered Weaver.
Sometimes it’s not about the money.
“Its about winning” – Former National Bryce Harper
I thought the same thing HaloFan. The Nationals have traded everyone away so why would Soto be interested in staying put? It’s not like their minor league system is loaded either.
“Where’s my ring?” – Former National Bryce Harper
“You didn’t earn one here.” Every Nationals fan from 2019 on.
He’s young and likely is following the advise of Boras. Hopefully, they’ve secured injury insurance. My guess is he’ll sign once the new CBA is in effect and both sides better understand the long term implications.
He would have been very tradeable on that deal assuming he stayed healthy.
That’s like Stanton’s extension, only Soto is a better hitter and it’s 8 years later.
“It’s not about the money money money…” – Jessie J
“It’s about the schools” – Hampton.
Because, you know, there are no good private schools in Manhattan.
While I do get a kick about when Mike Hampton is laughable for that effort to throw shade on the Mets and NY, as a Marlins fan and Floridian, my personal favorite still is from the 2002-2003 offseason when the Marlins and Rockies agreed to a trade of Preston Wilson, Charles Johnson and some extras for Hampton and Juan Pierre. Hampton, a Floridian and resident, exercised his no-trade clause and said that he wouldn’t waive it unless the Marlins agreed to trade him somewhere else. He only waived his no-trade after it was restructured to include the Braves as the team acquiring him, and he agreed to it because…and I’m paraphrasing his words…”I want to play for a team that’s actually trying to win a championship.”
Well, everyone knows what happened in 2003.
And it get’s better with salt in the wounds. As a result of Hampton turning the trade into a debacle, the Marlins pivoted to sign free agent Mark Redman to fill what became a desperate need to fill out the staff with a veteran lefty. In 2003, Hampton had 31 starts and was 14-8 with an ERA of 3.84 in 190.0 innings, with 100 Ks and 1 complete game. Redman had 29 starts and was 14-9 with and ERA of 3.59 in 190.2 innings with a career high of 151 Ks and 3 complete games.
Mike Hampton joined Albert Belle in Marlins championship team infamy for screwing the Marlins in the offseason before a championship season. It’s the gift that keeps on giving…so many years later.
typo…in 2003, Hampton had 110 Ks.
You say “another situation of Boras steering a player wrong” but I don’t understand how you came to this conclusion.
Do you have some inside knowledge of a Boras client being steered wrong by Boras?
When was the last time you can think of a Boras client being steered wrong?
I bet for every 1 instance you can point out that a Boras client didn’t get what the projections predicted I can name 10 where the client beat the predictions.
Do you have official documented predictions? Otherwise how are you going to prove he beat the projections?
lol there are market projections everywhere every offseason, are you for real asking this? Fangraphs, MLBTR, BBP, MLB.COM, ESPN, The Athletic, ect, ect, ect…You name the outlet and they have published a market projection (granted some are more scientific then others) but they all have them.
Matt Harrington would respond, but he’s too busy changing tires at Costco.
Fever Pitch Guy
I’ll give better than projections, I’ll give an actual example of Boras costing a player money.
Jason Varitek, prior to the 2009 season rejected an arbitration offer from the Red Sox that would have paid him $10M for the season … because of Boras.
He ended up signing with the Red Sox for half that amount, along with a $5M option for 2010.
How many other examples you need?
How about Jose Fernandez. It’s not just about the player but his family too.
I mean just off the top of my head, Michael Conforto will be lucky to get half of what he was allegedly offered for an extension last winter that Boras advised him not to take.
The exact parameters of what he was offered are unknown but supposedly it was in the 100 million dollar range
A few bad examples doesn’t change his standing as the best agent in pro sports
He’s made way more for his clients than he’s ever lots. It’s a bad take, not shocking though
I can’t even continue with this conversation, you are ridiculous but here you go.
You have no way of knowledge why JV or anyone else made a decision to pass on any offer, maybe Boras steered him wrong maybe he made the decision himself, maybe they had an offer from another team and it fell through for any number of reasons.
You’re really reaching if you have to go all the way back to 2009 but you don’t know what he would have received in arb, the system was very different back then, I mean really JV in 2009, he was really at the back of his career.
I don’t need any more examples, you clearly just have an issue with Boras and talking to you in just exhausting.
Matt Harrington is doing whatever Matt Harrington is doing today because as it turns out Matt Harrington wasn’t that great at throwing a baseball.
Harvey the Mets were I believe if I remember correctly interested in possibly extending.
Did you just compare generational hitter Juan Soto to Jason Varitek? This lockout has driven some of y’all off the cliff of sanity
Stephen Drew. We only hear about the big Boras clients. The clients who would get a huge payout with or without him. There have been more than a few Stephen Drew’s.
Please, Hammer. Don't hurt 'em.
Dallas Keuchel was definitely steered wrong by Boras. Boras advised him to turn down a contract that had an AAV of $18.4 million. Several months later, Keuchel signed for $13 million total. Boras convinced Keuchel that if he held out he would get a $100 million contract or some such nonsense. He should have taken the $18.4M. I agree that in this case there is no way Soto should have signed this extension, though. The guys can make about $60 million over the next three years and then get a contract for $400+ million. This offer is at least $100 million below market value. I know the guy can always get so seriously injured that he won’t make that much money but trust me… That’s not going to happen. The risk of that happening is so low it is easily worth betting against. Especially considering he has at least $25 million in the bank no matter what happens. You gotta extend these guys before they become mega-millionaires to make it worth it for them. Plus… The Nationals pretty much suck, right? No reason to choose them over a better team who will pay more. I know they could easily be better in three years but they could also easily be worse. No reason to count on them getting better before they prove it. Like most great baseball players I am sure Soto wants another ring as soon as possible. There are a lot of other teams who provide a better opportunity than the Nationals for that to happen and I am sure many of them would be willing to offer a much higher AAV and over $400 total million. I would be wanting to get the heck out of Dodge and go to some team who doesn’t have Steven Strasburg eating so much of their payroll when he doesn’t even play. They are seriously offering Soto a much lower AAV then a bum like Stras.
Boras is not perfect but ultimately the player has the pen. Sometimes the pressures come from the union. Still don’t understand how players and agents can talk between them whereas owners can’t.
@Yadi – Soto is an excellent hitter, but a generational talent? Little too early to tell on that. His numbers are good, but certainly not great up to this point in his career
Soto’s numbers certainly are “great up to this point in his career.” The article above this comment section is one source of that information.
Jason Varitek basically told Boras that he wanted to stay with the Red Sox no matter what. Maybe it didn’t pay off in terms of money but it sure did in rings and no-hitters. So maybe Boras cost him but he stayed there and achieved quite well.
I also don’t understand how Boras has ever ‘steered anyone wrong’ the dude tries to get top dollar for his clients. That’s what he’s paid to do.. Maybe a Boras client hasn’t worked out at a certain stop in their career, but just because they might’ve not performed great doesn’t mean they didn’t get paid accordingly. That’s the team’s issue.. Ill never understand why commenters think these players are the bad guys wanting more money. When we want a raise and don’t get it who are we mad at ourselves or our bosses lol.
@baseballclassic The dude is a career .301/.432/.550 hitter… If thats not great I really have no idea what you expect out of a player
Sid Bream Speed Demon
Dumbest take in the history of the internet BaseballClassic 1985. Just asinine.
Actually he says “he hopes this isn’t another instance of Boras steering a player wrong.” Completely different.
More than one.
That’s 1 horrible example
Please, Hammer. Don't hurt 'em.
I think turning this down was smart for Soto. Seager got $325 million for 10 years and he’s no Juan Soto. $350 million for 13 years is really low for him. I do understand that if he gets seriously injured it costs him a ton did money to turn this down. He’s already got enough money to live the rest of his life in luxury though. A player in his situation should go for the maximum amount. It’s not often someone has an opportunity to sign a record breaking contract. No risk, no reward. He has the potential to be the highest paid athlete in world history. Aim high. If you miss, at least you tried your best. Even if somehow it doesn’t work out, I think we all know he will be just fine. When’s the last time a bonafide superstar got a career ending injury before he turned 25 anyway? The risk of that happening seems really low to me. This isn’t a full contact sport like football where someone’s knee could explode and they are never the same. It happens in baseball but it’s really rare.
It’s very stupid to turn down the offer. The risk of injury is unlikely, but not even close to taking the risk of getting another 50- 75 million.
Sid Bream Speed Demon
He won’t be the first $500 million player…….he very well may be the first $600 million player.
Except for the fact that he will likely soon experience a career devastating injury and/or a significant decline in his 1 single skillset (batting, not good at anything else). Rejecting that offer will end up being one of the biggest player blunders in the history of sports contracts.
What player specifically can you name that Boras steered wrong?
Stephen Drew steered himself wrong by being bad at baseball.
Matt Harvey and Jose Fernandez. They could’ve been paid not just for themselves, but for their families for generations.
One career declined. The other player died.
Yet they tell us trading Mookie was a bad move. He won’t live up to that contract.
Over $400 million dollar player will definitely hit free agency for sure. Who could blame him?
why? Fair offer, risk for the team and more money than the Soto’s will ever need. Hope he doesn’t break a leg…
I think its just weird, especially for us, because the difference between $350mil and $400mil seems insignificant when you weigh the guarantee of the former vs. the risk of the latter.
Personally, its hard to envision spending $350mil and especially hard to envision not being satisfied with it. So it seems like an easy “take the money and run” choice.
There must be a reason these guys risk it though. Is it truly and purely about the value? Is it ego? Greed? Is it about helping the other players in the union? Guess we cant know for sure, but it is hard to imagine ever turning that down.
@itsmeheyhi- Nah man he’ll just be the best player in baseball in the next year or two, so a contract north of $400 million is totally not out of the question,for Soto. $500 million is way too much. $450-460 for 13 years seem pretty fair. I mean he’s 23 years old. He’s definitely worth 2 top prospects and another 1 in your top 10-15.
Boros just wants to auction off his free agent clients and seeks to break records with their signings.
He is very good at his job.
I respect that.
However, making it all about the highest dollar value of the contracts
has, at times, backfired for the player, the team, the fans, MLB and Boros.
Absolutely ridiculous. I hate the Nationals but this was more than a “fair” offer. They should trade him immediately and get a king’s ransom in return if he really turned down that huge offer.
Soto has arguably been the best hitter in the NL the past four seasons. Compared to recent contacts that have been handed out, it was not a fair offer. He’s worth more than an AAV of $27M. Lindor received a better contract from the Mets and his career offensive numbers at the time of the deal weren’t anywhere close to what Soto has put up.
Lindor got overpaid and is one of the game’s elite defenders.
Josh, there’s plenty of time to get a real understanding of whether Lindor was overpaid.
Lindor was overpaid. He’d have to transform into a new player to be worth the contract.
Lindor has the worst contract in baseball. 341 million for an OPS in the .700s
Correct. He did get overpaid, but that still sets the market for others.
I know one even worse: Chris Davis
Fever Pitch Guy
B-b-but Lindor has a good glove and is popular! He smiles a lot!
I mean the Lindor contract is pretty bad but this is also a drastic oversimplification that ignores the fact that Lindor got off to a historically bad start.
IMO Lindor at his best still wasn’t worth the contract, but he’s a career 821 hitter who is largely considered to be one of the best defensive players in baseball. Even with his career worst offensive season last year, he still posted a 3.1 bWAR & 2.7 fWAR. And when you look at his actual splits, after posting a .587 OPS through May, he posted an 0.825 OPS the remainder of the season (June – Sept)… you know…pretty much his exact career OPS…
Now, it is entirely fair to say his defense will decline as he ages, and that an 820ish OPS is not the type of offensive statline that warrants this type of contract…but the current narrative that you are regurgitating here around Lindor really misses the reality of the situation
And this is coming from someone who thought it was a pretty drastic overpay when it was signed
Yeah, it was so bad that he had two seasons (2018 and 2019) that made JP Arencibia’s worst season playing in 100+ games, which was 2013, the worst season ever by a hitter with 20+ home runs look good and 2020 looked to be the same if he was allowed to play most of the season since he was hitting .115 with zero home runs and 1 run batted in through 16 games, worse than Jay Bruce was through 10 games last season although that too was historically awful.
Fever Pitch Guy
Ry – You’re not grasping the difference in service time between Soto now and Lindor then.
Soto is under team control for 3 more years, Lindor was under team control for only one year when he signed.
A player’s “worth” is based on multiple factors, of which years to free agent eligibility is one.
And yeah, Lindor was definitely overpaid.
Soto is also a corner OF, which limits his defensive value and mutes some of his impact. He’s still the best hitter in the game, but there is a reason that he has a little more than half the WAR that Trout did through the same age..
And he’s not a good corner OF, either. Or good with SB or base/base running. He’s a non-base stealing DH, basically.
100% correct. I never understand why people think Soto deserves 500M or more when he’ll soon be a DH only player.
And he has a body type that does not age well.
Soto is a plus defender in both RF and LF. https://baseballsavant.mlb.com/leaderboard/outs_above_average?type=Fielder&startYear=2020&endYear=2021&split=no&team=&range=year&min=q&pos=9&roles=&viz=show He will be in the OF for years to come.
yeah…no he isn’t
There are many different stats that go beyond simply OAA
Boiling it down, he has been worth negative dwar every year of his career per br (-1; -0.5; -1; & -0.2) & fangraphs similar boiled down defensive number (fielding & positional adjustment combined metric) terms him as a below average fielder every season of his career as well (weird scale but totals to -29 pts overall vs the corresponding offensive value score of of roughly 140)
There are also plenty of underlying metrics like UZR or UZR/150 and DRS that mostly support the idea that he is a below average fielder (though his defense in rf last year was definitely improved so that is at least a positive and put him even at slightly above average by some of these metrics)
I don’t agree w/ the notion that he needs to be moved to DH but to call him a plus fielder is just flat out incorrect
I don’t necessarily agree w/ the statement
Any team handing out a contract larger than that offer, now or several years from now will regret it. No player is worth that money.
When the revenues are pouring, in a player get that much or more is totally reasonable. The alternative is ever-skyrocketing owner profits.
Lindor is one of the best defensive shortstops in the game. Combined with his above average offense that made him a very valuable player.
In a down year for him in 2021 his production was still worth more than his $22 million salary. An improvement in production to his career averages in 2022 would mean surplus value for the Mets.
But Pad Fans, he was bad in April and May, and those numbers fit the narrative that he’s an awful, overpaid player, so some people are going to hitch their wagon to that mule and ride it for the next decade.
Production worth 22M? Based on what math?
Maybe he just doesn’t want to commit 13 years to an organization that is rebuilding when he can get the same deal or better with a contender in a few years … I highly doubt it was about the money
Current market conditions say he’s worth much more than that. Counter with 12/425, meet somewhere in the middle and call it a day. No need to squeeze every last nickel out of a franchise when dealing with these absurd numbers.
Fever Pitch Guy
Nobody knows what current market conditions are, until a new CBA is signed.
Did you not read the article? Based on all precedents, that was an under-market offer.
Dude that’s only a 26 MM annual value. Justin Upton is literally making more than that.
I couldn’t care less what the average annual value is. It’s $350 million GUARANTEED. I’m sure he’ll find some way to pay bills with that.
It’s not about paying the bills, it’s about being paid appropriately relative to previous contracts.
Look at it this way…
It’s basically $30 million per year for 10 years and then it’s a little under $17 million per year for the last three years when he will not have the same production. He could suffer a career-ending injury tomorrow. This would all be guaranteed money unlike the NFL.
Can you pay your bills with a $75K salary? Absolutely. So I guess you wouldn’t mind making a $75K salary if you were a renowned neurosurgeon while your peers make $750K, right?
Exactly which MLB players have signed a $3.5 billion contract? That’s the same ratio that you just used.
Also, most of their “peers” do not even sign nine-figure contracts.
Maybe Ry’s comparison was off a little bit in terms of numbers of the surgeon but his point is correct. This contract offer was below market value for Soto.
And yes, Soto’s “peers” do sign nine-figure contracts. Juan Soto’s “peers” are Mike Trout, Bryce Harper, Mookie Betts…players like that. His peers are not Brad Miller or Chris Taylor.
Crazies in Camden
It’s not our fault you are slow
Can you not read? I said “most” of his peers do not sign nine-figure contracts. Of course nine-figure contracts happen but not for the majority of players. Also, I’m pretty sure that only two or three players have ever signed a bigger contract in terms of total money than the one Soto turned down.
48, look at it this way…
$30M per year is well under the market rate for top-tier players. They’re getting $36M+ these days. And why should Soto settle for $17M per year for the last three? Others haven’t. Besides, the Nationals are getting him for incredible bargain prices for at least the first 4-5 years of his career. An overpay at the end when inflation will have diluted the value of today’s dollar somewhat balances those huge bargain seasons.
No it’s not. It’s about GUARANTEED MONEY!
@Tom sorry to disappoint, but Soto’s peers do not include Betts or Trout. Those are players that play great defense and actually have value both offensively and defensively. Soto is comparable to Harper, a better version of him actually. But if you compare any 4 years of Trout or Betts to Soto’s career, you’ll see Soto about 10 WAR below them
With all the dealings Boras has had with the Nats, maybe he is confident the Nationals will stay at the table and his play will be….”if you give my man Carlos a 350M deal, I’m pretty sure my man Juan will see your commitment to winning and sign his $350M deal……”
ALL of Soto’s peers sign 9 figure deals. The only players in his category, his peers, are players like Trout, Lindor, Tatis, Harper, Betts, Bogaerts, Acuna Jr.. Semien, Machado, Arenado. What do those guys make? Any that are not 9 figures deals?
Soto is a plus defender – https://baseballsavant.mlb.com/leaderboard/outs_above_average?type=Fielder&startYear=2020&endYear=2021&split=no&team=&range=year&min=q&pos=9&roles=&viz=show Look who is listed below him on that list.
A little bit?
best is Soto is better than all of his peers, but its not about the money, its about the love of the game.
SoCalBrave, Trout’s first eight full seasons were transcendent, so comparing anyone to him is going to make the other player look bad.
Regarding Betts, his first 4 seasons are several WAR ahead of Soto, but he debuted two years older and didn’t have a 60-game season in the mix.
Defense definite is a difference, but Soto’s hitting is well ahead of Betts.
Soto isn’t on the market. He won’t be a free agent for three years.
You forgot about the classic, “mystery team” never named, always in the hunt, always bidding to drive the price up and make teams bid against themselves,,,
I am surprised that teams still fall for that ploy.
He’s leaving 40-60 million on the table by taking that deal. He’s set for life already makes it a lot easier to take a gamble.
He’d probably be leaving a lot more than than on the table taking this deal.
Why would he care if they trade him? He can put up ridiculous numbers for the next team and still go to free agency and blow away a $350m deal.
The idea that a player should be “loyal” to billionaire owners who try to screw them out of market value is laughable.
This is the same team owner that is currently voting to lock him out of his job so he doesn’t have to pay his players more.
The point is that he’s obviously not staying there if he turned that down and the Nationals are rebuilding right now so they should get something for him instead of just having him be a great player on a bad team and then let him walk for nothing.
To say it was a fair offer in your initial comment is untrue. It was an attempt at a team-friendly discount and he didn’t fall for it.
The Nationals will either up their offer to market value or deal him for some prospects and then he’ll go to free agency. The same as every player.
All this mass hysteria over every deal for a top player breaking the previous record is absurd. Salaries are going to go up every year. Why wouldn’t they? Baseball isn’t hurting for money despite what the owners are claiming.
How is the third or maybe fourth (don’t remember for sure) biggest contract ever offered in the history of the sport a “team-friendly discount”? You are a troll.
48, it’s a team-friendly discount because it’s not in line with his skill set compared to other contracts. It’s not trolling to point out economic realities.
Soto hits for average very well but he isn’t a five-tool player.
That sounds like a pretty good description of Soto’s top player comparison – some guy named Ted Williams.
What the market price is changes every year. More than half the teams in the league have already been removed from his market, much like Correa. This is not about his WAR, its about what teams are willing and able to pay. When a player signs long term, he should be giving some discount for the guarantee of payment. Otherwise give the team an opt out at the 4 yr mark. If he wants to price himself so only NYY, Boston and LAD can afford him, I sure hope one is in need of an OF that year and can afford $40OMM. Well, kinda know they can afford it, but just like Correa, will they have other options?
It’s a team-friendly discount because he will shatter that in 3 years. Easily.
I’m sorry that you consider better informed fans pointing out the many ways your comment is wrong to be trolling. You might want to consider having better opinions if you are this fragile.
Except he hits for average, power, and gets on base.
His current career OPS+ is 160. That would put him 18th best in MLB history if he continued at this pace.
Ahead of a few guys like Stan Musial, Willie Mays, Hank Aaron, and Joe DiMaggio.
You know, those schlubs.
No way. That assumes he continues his current pace indefinitely, which will absolutely not happen. Assuming soto doesn’t suffer a career ending/altering injury in the near future and plays a full career into his late 30s, he will end up with an OPS+ of 140, at best.
To call that a team friendly contract is ridiculous. It’s not. You’re comparing it to other BAD contracts.
1 WAR was valued at $8m in 2020. Soto was worth over 7 WAR last year. That would be worth $56 on a one year deal.
You’re just another guy who doesn’t understand baseball economics. You should be angry at how rich we are making the owners not jealous that MLB players make money for their abilities.
1 WAR is valued at 8 million based on the same misconceptions that you have about salary and worth. It’s a totally subjective statistic with no actual market worth. I don’t care who gets rich. They all get rich. But these contracts always hold teams back. I’m not jealous, I just think it’s a dumb way to run a team, overpaying one player then trying to budget the rest of the roster. Just dumb.
It’s not a subjective stat, it’s literally the going rate for producing that much value for a major league team. That’s the reality of the situation.
Why should Juan Soto care if his team ends up hobbled by a long term contract? That’s not his problem or any other player’s.
Teams understand this risk and will still pay premium dollars for premium talent in their prime because they understand it is a good investment.
You or anyone else getting their panties twisted about players making too much money are getting laughed at by players and owners for bringing righteous sanctimony into baseball economics.
Players will make what the market demands. Period. And the market for Juan Soto in three years will start $400m. Anyone who thinks otherwise are just whiners complaining about poor ownership going broke like a chump.
Any major league team can afford to put a better team on the field if they actually care about winning. There is no such thing as an owner losing money on owning a ball club. They are literally a government sanctioned monopoly.
Cosmo2, you can call them BAD contracts, but the market is dictating the terms.
They offered him $27 million per year for the next 13 years for something he MIGHT do. Even actors and musicians get paid for actual production rather than potential. Honestly players shouldn’t be signed to a specific dollar amount but rather a percentage.
WAR is a joke. The many sites that produce it can’t even agree on a set formula. Setting a dollar amount per WAR is even more ludicrous. You truly believe Soto was worth $56 million in 2021? Lol
Its team friendly by about $130 – $150 million. On AAV its team friendly by at least $12.5 million per year.
12/480 is at the low end of the scale of what Soto will get in 3 years when he is a free agent. Maybe more.
We know what the player’s production was. We know what the players were paid. So value is easy to produce. Use either version of WAR. The come out within a few dollars of each other on value per WAR overall.
The biggest joke is people that say WAR is a joke. What it screams is that they can’t do the math.
You’re just proving my point. That’s paying them for what they’ve done in the past, not for what they’ll do in the future. Also, as someone else already stated, he isn’t even a free agent right now. This covers 10 years after he would be a free agent, not 13.
Add up what he would make through arbitration over the next three years and subtract that total from $350 million. Then the new total is what you get for the 10-year extension, which is actually well over $30 million per year if I’m not mistaken.
48, percentage of what?
85, WAR isn’t a joke, it’s just complicated. Agreeing on replacement level isn’t easy, nor on the exact weighting of each event. What is the alternative, doing nothing? Using Triple Crown stats? Making an informed estimate of a player’s past and future performance is the goal, and the methodology will continue to be refined.
Soto is projected to make over $16M this season in arbitration, and he’s likely to get $22-$25M the next year and around $30M in his final year. That’s about $70M, leaving $280M, or $28M per season, for his 10 FA years. The going rate for top-tier players is well over $30M per season on long-term deals (Cole, Lindor), and in three years it could be in the $40M range.
The current offer is from one team with no competition for his services. Yes, he’s taking a risk going year by year, but if he produces something close to what he’s done so far, he’ll hit free agency prior to his age-26 season and is very likely to receive offers in excess of $400M for fewer than 13 years.
I understand you think he would be overpaid, but his performance and the market will dictate what he’ll get.
Actors and musicians often get paid for what they’ve done and their expected potential returns. Tom Cruise/Chris Pratt/whoever is getting a guaranteed $20M (or whatever it is these days) for any big-budget movie based on the performance of previous movies, even if their next movie flops.
Sure, sometimes they get a cut of profits, but that’s on top of their guarantee. It’s kind of like bonuses for MVP/Cy Young voting results.
It might also be important to Soto to set a precedent for young players like himself in similar situations in the future. Taking an under value deal just because “wowwwy that’s a big number” potentially damages future negotiations for the next generation of mlb stars.
Right, the 1 dimensional player whose value will drop significantly if his one skill (batting) declines in any notable way rejected one of the 3 or so biggest contracts in MLB history out of ‘altruism’. Right…
So insane to even suggest that turning down that type of money would be done so on principle. These contracts are way out of hand. That offer is no underpay.
Then where should the money go? Teams can either improve their rosters or increase their profits.
@cosmo Did you even bother to read the article, or did you just go straight to comments?
Knowing that offer was not enough just dropped his trade value. And people wonder why the way Tampa Bay does business is catching on.
I’m not sure exactly how many years of control he has left but obviously he would be a very welcomed bat for a team in “win now” mode.
He has three years of team control left. You could just click the link in his name and find this information to better inform your comments, if you were interested.
I know he came up in 2018 but I don’t remember the exact date he was called up.
A year ago it would sound more fair. Now it’s closer to insulting. Few things don’t cost more. I mean 350 is basically the same money as older lesser players received in past years. Maybe 400 million as a starting point.At least sounds more impressive.
I don’t think anyone would have enough for me if I were the Nats GM. Maybe that’s why I’m not.
I agree. I thought the Tigers were blowing it when they gave Scherzer their last, best offer and he and Boros rejected it.
At that time, the Tigers would have been better off trading Scherzer for a truckload of top young talent and highly rated prospects.
It cost them a full tear down and rebuild instead of a retooling while contending.
Maybe he knows something about the new upcoming CBA.
Hey why not? Whose his agent?
It starts with a B and ends with an as…
450/13 is more reasonable he’s a top 3 player at least rn. He should be paid like one.
This is beyond ridiculous. 350 million is very much being paid like a top player. These salaries are getting way out of hand.
Manfred, is that you? jk
Most the guys with those 300 million contracts I wouldn’t call top players. The few that could be in the conversation won’t be for much longer. Soto is going to hit free agency at what 26 years old or something.
I think 350 is light. 450 is too much. I mean you can wait until he is a free agent if it takes that much.
Superstar Prospect Wander Javier
He is 23 and the best hitter in the game. Mookie got 12 years, $365mm. That is the starting point in negotiations. I expect a $400mm contract. Get your money, compañero!
How does Mookie’s contract look now? If I’m an owner I would not want to be on the hook for Betts.
1 WAR was valued at $8m in 2020.
Mookie produced over 4 WAR in 2021 for $23 in a down year for him.
4 WAR is valued at over $32m.
I think the Dodgers are thrilled with that signing.
Dude, this is the front end, year one of a 12 year contract, they are not thrilled with that production. Did that year offer surplus value if you accept the 8m/WAR? Yes. Is providing this amount of surplus value/yr on the front end of the contract enough to offset the back end which figures to have a yearly deficit? We shall see.
Yeah so again, in a “down year” they’ve already banked $9 toward the end of the contract. They will likely do the same for the next 2-3 years before it starts leveling out. Then at the back end they’ll start overpaying for sinking production. No part of this deal is a surprise to the Dodgers. They are paying premium dollars from premium talent, as they should.
What ever happened to people caring about putting the best team on the field instead of trying to manage ownership’s pocket book like they are going to share some of these savings with the fans?
Truly mind-boggling to me.
I like that way of looking at it.
Mookie contract looks about the same as it did when signed. One season shouldn’t have changed your opinion.
Might not be the money itself but more about opportunities to opt out, or how money is deferred, etc.
Good for Soto. At least 50mil in arbitration before 400-500+ on the open market.
The Nats nor any team deserve a sweetheart deal, which is the level of surplus value the games best overall hitter forgoing FA at 26(!) would provide.
A cool half bil
Trade him, get rid of him.
In nurse follars
He is already rich and will be richer via arbitration. Remember Lindor did the same thing because he was flush with endorsements money. It’s not as big a risk as you’d want to believe. My thing is if owners say no more, we are not paying nine figure guarantees, the union sues for collusion. At some point owners will say no at a time of declining interest and uncertain television revenue.
Lindor was making less than $1 million per year in endorsements money. Not exactly flush.
Fact they offered him this much and he declined probably damaged the relationship.
I doubt that. And so what if it did. Is he not going to play as well? Are they going to trade him for a lesser package just to be rid of him?
Smart, he should go for at least 500M
brave from the woods
It’s a gamble. He could have a career ending or hampering injury in those arb years and miss out. On the other hand, he keeps doing what he’s doing, he’ll get more. Definitely pressure there.
Will he? Every year teams get a bit wiser and more reluctant to dish out these absurd contracts. They should anyway.
Him or Boras could have an insurance policy. And career ending injuries are possible but not likely. Hampering injuries aren’t a problem. I have seen plenty of players who were obviously declining or looking ready to break down or need surgery get huge full money contracts.
Probably thinking by 2024 it will be 13/500M or something.
Don’t get hurt, don’t dip in production either will cut that first offer down, won’t go up.
Especially since he only offers value with the bat and nothing with the glove or on the bases. If the batting declines at all, then his value will drop significantly. As well as if his durability declines.
I have respect for the Nationals organization. Although it is not what his current market value would be, at least they are demonstrating a willingness to keep their stars. That said, I hope the Yankees don’t make the same mistake with him as they did with Harper. Welcome to NY Juan Sotolicious.
He is not going to be in The Bronx. God willing Dominiquez works out and the Yankees are not paying Soto &500m or more
You guys don’t want that lefty bat in RF? Man, I would take that. Judge DH, Dominguez CF, Periera LF? Stanton – IL
I don’t want anyone other than Harper for 300 million let alone 400. And this would be Judge’s last season if it was my call.
Hm, okay, fair enough, I understand the reasoning for that, but I would pay Judge (to a limit) and sign Soto. I completely understand those who wouldn’t, however. I am usually not one for long-term, high-money contracts. It’s one of the very few areas on which I agree with Hal & Cashman….to a point.
I’m sticking to my Yankees/Brewers prediction in 2027. Yankees in five.
I support Hal Steinbrenner.
48-Man: I like it. Well, I like anytime anyone has the Yankees winning the WS!
I would definitely take that and although that is a pretty long time from now, it would still outdo my guess of when they get they do. Which admittingly, a pessimistic one. Then again, I am not always right about what I say. That being said, I would love to see them win it all sooner than I think, even if it isn’t within 3 years.
Of course, my Braves will be winning a couple more times first. We don’t need this to be like the 90’s where we finally win one title and then the Yankees dynasty just takes over. Let us have the first half of this decade and then I don’t really care if you guys win a couple times as long as it’s not against us.
@Yankee Clipper- The Yankees pay Mr. Soto $460 million over 13 years after he is traded in a package that includes Dominguez, Gil, Deivi, and either Sweeney or Wells. Congratulations Ca$hman you finally come out of the weeds and make a big move!
I could see that, but man, I don’t think that would get it done. Honestly, I don’t think the Nats would let him go unless they got Dominguez AND Volpe just to start the conversation.
If they could get him for what you said? I think Cashman might actually do that. Hal is another story.
well he’s only 22 so 13 years gets him to 35…regardless if the NL adds the DH I suspect he should still be an elite hitter at that point
So you want to pay a dh $40+MM?
he won’t be a DH for the majority of that contract if that’s what you’re driving at
Upon what are you basing the prediction that he’ll still be elite at the age of 35. That would be HIGHLY unusual.
It’s like people on here don’t understand how aging curves work. Sure, maybe he’s an anomaly like Nelson Cruz, far more likely that he’s like the other 95%ish of players.
Would have been cute to toss him right in there with the “Big Money Gang”….. But when he is on this board ….eventually… it looks like he’ll be at the top….. barring some unfortunate incident(s)…..
1) Mookie Betts, Dodgers — 12 years, $365 million. …
2) Mike Trout, Angels — 10 years, $360 million. …
3) Francisco Lindor, Mets — 10 years, $341 million. …
4) Fernando Tatis Jr., Padres — 14 years, $340 million. …
5) Giancarlo Stanton, Marlins — 13 years, $325 million. …
6) Miguel Cabrera, Tigers — 8 years, $248 million.
You left off an MVP
That is true
I actually missed two $300MM contracts….
Bryce Harper $330 million/13 years
Manny Machado 10 year/$300 million…
Cabrera’s was actually more since they added 248M to an existing 2 year commitment remaining.(don’t know if it counts as a remake contract).
Basically if a hometown club offers someone anything, the AAV will certainly be a few million or more below market rate, which is what negotiations are for- to meet in the middle.
Freddie Freeman is worth more than the $27M AAV over 5 years the Braves offered him, but worth less than the $33.35M over 6 years he countered with.
A lot of people seem to agree that Freeman and the Braves would be best off agreeing to 6 years/$180M and calling it a day. He gives up $20M, they pay him an additional $45M, but really only an additional $7.5M a season, which *is* market rate for his recent production and considering how below market and long his previous extension was, it’s only fair.
So now apply that kind of logic to Soto’s situation:
Let’s assume Soto would have countered with 13 years/$480M, which seems like a reasonable guesstimate in this market for the top tier free agents and extensions.
I think 13 years/$416M would get a deal done with Soto and the Nationals. Nationals have to pay an extra $66M, Soto would be “giving up” an extra $64M.
Hence, it’d be a deal that met in the middle of the team’s goals and the player’s goals.
There isn’t a player on Earth worth $416 million. There isn’t one on Earth worth $300 million, and I think the owners are realizing this. $300 million players guarantee a team nothing except declining production after a few very productive years.
Right, all bets are off in terms of future performance expectation once a player hits 30. Doesn’t matter how good the player may currently be.
The owners feel they are worth it or they wouldn’t pay them as much. Winning gets people to watch games. Many teams can’t win without spending money or at least win consistently.
“it’s only fair”…no. It isn’t. He chose to accept that previous extension. If you think Freeman is worth that much, fine. But previous extension shouldn’t really be a consideration for the team.
When a player turns down an offer like that, it means he wants to hit free agency and play elsewhere. With Washington in rebuild mode they should at least consider trading him. They can get enough players from a team in or near a competitive run that would speed up their rebuild. Just thinking off the cuff, and using Toronto as an example only, Soto would get the Nats at least: Lourdes Gurriel Jr, Gabriel Moreno, Nate Pearson, Jordan Groshans and Orelvis Martinez. That’s a crazy package from the Jays perspective and many fans would lose their minds over that offer, but, something like that is what it would take.
Exactly right: “We finished last with you and we can finish last without you.” ( Branch Ricky). Same concept applies to Soto
If a team wants to finish anywhere but last, it needs more good players, not excuses not to pay the good ones they already have.
Just because a famous person said something doesn’t make it accurate.
They tried, he didn’t think it was enough. If you think you can then turn him into multiple good players while being able to use the money you’d be paying him to address additional needs, wouldn’t that be the prudent thing for a team in the Nats’ position to do?
I disagree. I think Soto loves Washington and wants play there. As long as Washington is the best team for him financially.
A trade of Soto may have to involve more than two teams. Most teams, particularly competitive teams, don’t/won’t have enough to even make the Nationals think, imho.
He’s worth more imo but still a gamble to turn down that kind of $$$
Welp. He’s getting dealt
There was a pretty long, well-reasoned fan post earlier this winter over on Federal Baseball, the Nats blog, urging the Nats to make Soto a 17-year/$500M offer. If he takes it, the fanpost said, great. If he doesn’t, make the offer public and trade him while his trade value is high.
On an annual basis, the offer Soto just turned down is something like $2.5 million less than that. So the gap between what the guy over at FBB argued for and real life turns out to be the size of the manager’s salary.
I’ll call that good enough. Trade Soto.
He’s not your man. Stras and Zimmerman took hometown deals. It takes a certain kind of player with a certain kind of priorities. Soto’s great and I love him, but the talk about wanting to stay in Washington? That’s just good manners. At this point, his value to the team is in the MLB-ready talent he can bring over with the str0ke of a pen.
That and the $350 million ($27M/year) the Lerners apparently have lying around would make for a quicker return to contention than if you hang on to Soto for nostalgia’s sake.
Strasburg’s contract was absolutely not a hometown deal/discount, and in addition to that, it’s turning out to be one of the worst contracts of all time. There’s a reason he’s not using the opt outs, and the opt outs (multiple player opt-outs built in) help highlight how much of a non-hometown deal/discount it was. It was player friendly from the beginning- both in terms of salary and the opt-outs.
I’m talking about his extension in 2016. He gave up his free agency to stay. Being a Nat meant something to him. He could have gotten that money anywhere.
The second deal we gave him? Yes, probably going down as an all-time worst deal for any team.
I still think Chris Davis ( another Boras client) is the worst contact ever. Jordan Zimmerman pretty awful as well
Or, to say it real simple, since he’s not gonna help us win later, he’s gotta help us win now.
What hometown deal did Strasbourg take? And why should any player be expected to take a hometown discount? That’s what the first six years of a major league career are – huge discounts.
Strasburg’s first extension. I talked about it above.
Nobody, particularly not me today, here in this comment section, said or even implied that any ballplayer needs to take or should take a hometown discount.
What I said was that a certain kind of player will, for reasons they are allowed to have, and that Soto in my judgement is not one of them.
His first extension had nothing to do with a hometown discount. He choose to avoid risk and take guaranteed money. It turned out to be a good contract for Washington but he was only looking out for himself.
You’re wrong because in order to get his first contract he had to give up his ability to negotiate with the rest of the league.
There’s no clearer demonstration of giving the home team special treatment.
It’s good to see one of the best betting on himself. The fact that this seems to be upsetting people is just the bonus.
Exactly. I’m loving this!
It’s a huge gamble but it’s not like he isn’t going to achieve generational wealth from arbitration over the next three years. Good for Soto.
I would ask Soto and Boras one question: Do you want to spend your career here or not? If yes , let’s negotiate something. If not then let him know we are trading him.
Soto wants to spend his career with whoever gives him the most money or Washington if they come close enough before his free agency.
The Nationals should have offered this deal a year or two ago if they wanted Soto to take it. At this point he can continue to make good money through arbitration then get 12 years and $450M in free agency. Maybe even more than that depending on how much other big name free agents make in the coming years
If the Nationals offered $500m for 10 years and no opt outs Boras would say no. There is only one Boras Client that spent his entire career with Boras and played for one team for 10 years plus: Bernie Williams
So you can read Boras’ and Soto’s minds?
10/500 is massively better than the current offer.
I do not claim to be psychic. But I am aware of the history and the Bernie Williams statement still stands. “You need to tell him ( George Steinbrenner), you want to be here:” ( Scott Boras).
I think Soto, or anyone else for that matter, would have a hard time turning down a contract like that
I mean how much money do u need? Invested correctly at all, I imagine he dies a billionaire. That not enuf?
That’s not the point.
Who leaked this and for what reason ? More to follow….
Don’t get the negative comments. So he’s gambling on his own performance; when did this become a bad idea? Ya, if he suffers a career ending injury, he’ll look like a chump. But who knows what the revenue structure will look like over the next few years; with gaming revenue around the corner, $500M might actually be on the light side.
Kudoos to a guy willing to show a little risk. And, as somebody noted, he’s already set for life; why not roll the dice? His kids are going to eat pretty well either way.
There are plenty of examples where gambling on yourself becomes a bad idea…that said, it’s his choice, hope it works out for him.
There are plenty of examples where it paid off handsomely like Betts.
Many people on here are thinking from a perspective of an older person, accomplished in life (kids/family/house), security, & with far less money than what Soto was offered.
Many of us in our early 20s thought we were essentially invincible with no consideration for retirement/security. I believe most of us in his position would bet on ourselves.
We are looking at this from the outside. Soto’s worldview is very, very different. His very short adult life has only known superstardom, and his contemporaries are swimming in money. We all believe we have more control over life’s circumstances at that age (ie, Fernandez) so we were far more willing to take risks.
Honestly, I would hold out for FA too. I wouldn’t now, knowing what I know, being near middle-age, but at 22? Yeah, I was indestructible.
Well said, Clipper. When I was Soto’s age, I was concerned about the return ON my money; these days, I’m much more concerned with the return OF my money. And I’m not anywhere near the same multiverse as Soto.
I love the guy; great attitiude, great approach, a Public Relations dream. A guy I truly hope it works out for.
Thanks, Bob, you too. And I agree with you. He’s one of the very few guys I would sign long-term and a lot of money if I were the Yankees (or whomever). He’s an organizational guy to build around in every way.
I’m really surprised at how underrated he is on this board by some. He’s a plus defender (one of the top 7 RF), and never had a season below 142OPS+. The guy’s a hitting machine at only 22! If anyone is set up to be successful it’s this guy who will hit FA just before his mid-prime years.
I may get torn up for this, and I don’t say this lightly as I’m pretty critical of performance, but I do believe he is every bit as good as the other top-tier guys (Tatis, Harper, etc).
How does anyone decline an offer for $350 million because he views it as “not enough”? Greed and a desire for riches are traps that bring ruin and destruction. It is the love of money, and not money itself, that is the problem. The love of money is a sin because it gets in the way of worshiping God. Jesus said it was very hard for rich people to enter the Kingdom of God. When the rich young ruler asked Jesus what he should do to inherit eternal life, Jesus told him to sell all his possessions and give the money to the poor. “When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth” (see Matthew 19:16-22). By instructing him to give up his money, Jesus pointed out the young man’s main problem: greed or a love of money. The man could not follow Christ because he was following money. His love of this world interfered with his love for God.
Greed refuses to be satisfied. More often than not, the more we get, the more we want. Material possessions will not protect us—in this life or eternally. Jesus’ parable of the rich fool in Luke 12:13–21 illustrates this point well. Again, money or wealth is not a problem. The problem is our attitude toward it. When we place our confidence in wealth or are consumed by an insatiable desire for more, we are failing to give God the glory and worship He deserves. We are to serve God, not waste our time trying to become rich (Proverbs 23:4). Our heart’s desire should be to store up riches in heaven and not worry about what we will eat or drink or wear. “But seek first [God’s] kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well” (see Matthew 6:25-34).
Dunedin, please let us know if you feel the same way about the owners’ greed.
Right on, gbs!
gbs42 – Greed is greed, regardless of whether the greediness is from a player or an owner,
Capitalism is basically based on greed. So, I guess what you’re saying is most of the world is going to Hell.
vtbaseball – Your view on Capitalism is bent and dark. What is the alternative answer; Godless Communism? Yes, Capitalism can be driven in part by greed, but it can also be used for great good. Capitalism is actually a better system when it comes to giving because it has proven to increase individual wealth, which allows its citizens to give out of their increase. Communism has proven to simply make all its citizens poor, except the very few in power who decide where the wealth goes. But even capitalism won’t work, by itself, as a system for aiding the poor. It depends on its citizens to be diligent (Proverbs 10:4) and generous with the fruits of their labor (1 Timothy 6:18) and to give out of love for God and neighbor. Thus, we see that God has designed for the physical and financial needs of the poor to be met by Christian individuals, rather than by any system of government.
Annnnnnnnd… we’re quoting the Bible now.
Book club w. the Bible! I love books of fiction….but this is a baseball discussion.
I think Soto is one of the 2-3 young stars that a team should feel pretty confident giving a $300m-$400m contract. Him and Tatis Jr. are pretty much can’t miss. Sure, there could always be an injury, which they will surely have insurance to cover at least part of that contract. No insurer (even speciality) would take that full risk, but they’ll do 3-5yrs at a time. Anyhow, Soto is the real deal and while outsiders may not see he is “worth it”, there are enough metrics to support paying that kind of money for a generational talent.
The Nats are about $150M short on that offer if they want Soto’s autograph on it…
Lolololol Soto is getting nowhere near $500 million
Should have asked where the other $150M was coming from. Signing bonus? That’s awfully light for the best pure hitter in baseball.
No one thinks that is a final offer. The question remains does he want to be in Washington or not?
The article literally states he was offered and turned down $350M. So I’m not entirely sure what you’re saying. Nobody thinks it was a final offer? Nobody said it was. The question has nothing to do with Washington. He would sign with Pittsburgh if the money was right.
Probably holding out for a 20 year deal.
Not surprised that he turned the deal down. Considering he is a Boras client, they would have had to offer him something completely crazy for Boras to advise to take the deal. The only way that I could see him take a deal like this one would be if he had ties to the DC area and wanted to remain their. (ie he grew up there and has a ton of family around or married a girl from the area with a ton of family around). Good luck to him. Hope he stays healthy and has the opportunity to see if he made the right decision or not.
Because players take a lot less money to be near their or their wifes family.
Scott Boras sat Soto down and said “Look Kid, this is a list of people old and new who will and currently have a higher AAV than you if you sign this contract….Look at where you will fall on this list… You can do a whole lot better”…
The highest-paid players in baseball history, by average annual value:
1. Max Scherzer, $43,333,333 (2022-24)
2. Gerrit Cole, $36,000,000 (2020-28)
3. Mike Trout, $35,541,667 (2019-30)
4. Stephen Strasburg, $35,000,000 (2020-26)
… Anthony Rendon, $35,000,000 (2020-26)
6. Francisco Lindor, $34,100,000 (2022-31)
7. Trevor Bauer, $34,000,000 (2021-23)
8. Justin Verlander, $33,000,000 (2020-21)
9. Zack Greinke, $32,500,000 (2016-21) (reduced for deferrals)
… Nolan Arenado, $32,500,000 (2019-26)
11. Corey Seager, $32,500,000 (2022-31)
12. Miguel Cabrera, $31,000,000 (2016-23)
… David Price, $31,000,000 (2016-22)
… Clayton Kershaw, $31,000,000 (2019-21)
15. Clayton Kershaw, $30,714,286 (2014-20)
16. Mookie Betts, $30,416,667 (2021-32)
17. Max Scherzer, $30,000,000 (2015-21)
18. Manny Machado, $30,000,000 (2019-28)
19. Roger Clemens, $28,000,022 (2007)
20. Alex Rodriguez, $27,500,000 (2008-17)
… Yoenis Cespedes, $27,500,000 (2017-20)
… Jacob deGrom, $27,500,000 (2017-20)
23. Mookie Betts, $27,000,000 (2020)
24. Paul Goldschmidt, $26,000,000 (2020-24)
“Right between Betts and Goldy… we can do better”….
It’s amazing how Harper’s Phillies contract has actually become something of a bargain.
Yeah, and how quickly it occurred too. By the end, when his production is totaled, it will have been well worth it.
I would not offer any player a 10 year contract. Why? How many of them turn out to be a good investment? 1: Jeter. 2: If he got 10 years Scherzer.
Rodriguez’s 1st 10 year contract would have turned out great if he didn’t opt out. But the point stands.
How would it have turned out if they tested for PEDs?
He would have been an exceptional player regardless of PED’s, which were used rampantly throughout every team in baseball at the time. Rodriguez represents a 1 in a generation talent. By the way, a Mariners trainer said that the ONLY player on the team who wasn’t using them in the 1990s was Dan Wilson. So guess who else was also using them…
We will never know. The Rangers bought him. and traded him.
I’m not sure they thought it was worth it. And the Yankees didn’t think extending him was worth it.
But he did cheat his way to a 2009 World Series Ring. Which makes him a thief.
I get your drift. All we have to do is look at how the father aged with a similar body type to see the son without PEDs.
And it fits in perfectly with his entitled, bratty, selfish attitude. He was definitely using, no doubt about it. Fits in perfectly in terms of his personality, physical changes, and the era in which he played. All 3.
What a greedy fool. Can you imagine? Turning down 350 million dollars? And because you want more? Sad what baseball has become. All professional sports, but especially Americas Pastime. Makes me sad to see it.
Do youu realize it’s an $11B industry, and if the players don’t get the money, it stays with the owners?
Think Hollywood: There are no stars like John Wayne or Sophia Loren anymore. It is comic books and not much else. That is the direction MLB is heading in.
$12 billion industry in 2021 that grew 30% over the previous 5 years. That revenue will go up in 2022.
He doesn’t mind greedy billionaires. just minds players getting their fair share of the revenue in a game that doesn’t exist without them.
Greed is good
Take guaranteed money. Always!!!!
It’s Boras, so this is probably an attempt at leveraging the Nats into signing a few other guys first.
I will never forget Cole and his “Team Boras” hat. That showed that he and most Boras clients are nothing more then mercenaries.
Look at the brutal contracts that Boras gets for his Clients: Ellsbury, Davis, Strasberg and I can go on and on. I am in agreement with Jerry Reinsdorf: No Boras clients on my team.
Best Screenname Ever
I was on the clubs’ side of the labor dispute until I saw that the player was only offered a third of a billion dollars and chose to remain arbitration eligible instead. Now I see how hard pre-free agent players have it, where they are only offered a third of a billion dollars to give up arbitration,
There’s only one Juan Soto, but several hundred other players.
I’d imagine there are probably many Juan Sotos.
Name one that plays as well as he does. Just one would do.
It’s ok, just keep trying, one day you might come up with something clever.
All I’ll say is if you get injured and never see that kind of money again just do the world a favor and keep your mouth shut, because no one wants to hear it.
He’s made about $10M so far, so he can afford the risk.
Depends on how much he’s spent.
He’ll make another $16 million or so in 2022 if we have a season and $27 million in 2023.
Just $350 million? What a lowball offer?
The smartest owner ever? Charles O. Finley. Three straight titles and did not believe in multi year contracts. If Soto gets $50m a year because of production that is fine. But paying Chris Davis over $20m for NOT playing: Unacceptable
This is why I’m siding with the owners during this lockout. Another Boras client with a ridiculous refusal of a ridiculous amount of money. Soto only had 20 doubles last year! Some slugger. And don’t come at me with, “But he drew a lot of walks!” He’s paid to hit, not walk.
The contract also would’ve covered his last 3 arbitration years, netting him more money than he’d have earned using the process in place. Isn’t that something the player’s union is crying about?
These greedy players of this era have blinders on when it comes to how good they have it. I wouldn’t care at all if this season is lost. These babies need a reality check. Boras is going to kill this game with his behind-the-scenes shenanigans directing the union. Smh
100% correct. Scott Boras does not give a damn about the future of the game. I bet if he offered to attend an owners meeting without the press and had some positive suggestions, the owners would gladly listen. Will he? Never
Actually he’s paid to both hit AND walk…
Soto doesn’t have great foot speed, why does it matter if he walks a lot? He also isn’t a great baserunner, in general. This modern obsession with walks is laughable. Hit the ball! Walking isn’t what draws fans to the game
Getting on base = run scoring opportunities. You know, the whole point of the game.
I legit can’t tell if you’re serious.
He doesn’t understand baseball. Its useless responding to him.
This is the stupidest take in this comment thread that is filled with absurd views.
All he has is the bat. He can’t steal bases, he’s not a good base runner in general, and he plays one of the least important spots on the field- and plays it poorly on top of that. He’s basically already a DH and it was definitely a fair offer. At least a fair offer at the minimum. Rejecting that offer could easily turn out to be one of the biggest blunders in the history of athletic contracts- especially if/when his one skill set declines in any notable way and/or his durability declines (both could easily happen). Trade him, get rid of him.
The fact the leaders of the Players Association are mostly Boras Clients who generally have about as much loyalty to the team I root for ( the Yankees) as Eileen Gu does to America is a prime reason I am pro owner. Soto is just the latest example
Amen. I’m a Yankee fan, as well, and Cole and deadbeat, overrated slug Britton can kiss my A. And if Judge is looking for some outrageous payday as an oft-injured, 30+ year old, I hope they trade him. These teams need to field 26 players, not just a few highly paid ones, to be successful.
The Royals and Braves have proven that you can win a title without these absurd payrolls…and you could even go back to the 2003 Marlins for another example of that.
And the one guy the Braves did pay (Acuna) did not play.
110%. The accidental Marlins WS title is the ultimate comparison.
3 small payrolls in 30 years. Not bad.
I know the Giants are not a small-market team by any means but I don’t remember them having massive payrolls during those championship runs. They were simply clutch. Anyway, the Yankees, Dodgers, Phillies, Mets and Angels have spent all this ridiculous money in recent years to combine for one 60-game “championship” between them over the last decade. The Dodgers have won 106 games in each of the last two FULL seasons (2019, 2021) and did not even reach the World Series in either of those two years.
They were closer to the top than the bottom but yeah they didn’t spend near 200 million. Seems in more recent years more teams spend over 150 million. Just because the Giants weren’t one of the few teams spending 200 million doesn’t mean they weren’t spending. They were still in the top third of highest spending teams. There will be a few bottom half teams or even a bottom third win a championship the next dozen years.
Betting on himself to stay healthy and productive over the next three years. Can’t necessarily blame him though, he may want to see what direction the organization is going in before committing to them for the next decade+
If a guy is happy with a team, he should stay even if means giving up a few bucks The former hockey player Derek Sanderson ( who Jeter was named after) is the classic example: He was unhappy his entire life except when playing and living in Boston. Only by getting back to Boston did things turn around for him.
As a Met fan, his decision is A-OK with me! No but for real, I really appreciate what Soto brings to the game. I’m sure Boras was all in his ear telling him to turn it down because he’ll get paid what Trout got paid. Me personally, foolish. 350MM guaranteed is more money than 5 generations of Soto’s could ever spend. I hope he stays health and his production keeps up or increases! Otherwise he will definitely regret this decision!
More than 50 generations could spend
Just the fact that no MLB player will actually admit they are pretty well compensated continues to be why I will root for my team and not any particular player. I’ll buy a Tigers shirt, but there won’t be a players name on it.
In nurse follars
At some point the market will collapse and reset. There is no never ending revenue stream. At some point television won’t pay, game attendance will be out of reach and or fan interest will die. Deals like this are not really in the best long term interest of the sport. It’s great for the players now but bad for the game.
I feel like that has been a common refrain for many years but TV deals keep getting renewed for higher and higher values.
Soto is top 3 hitter in the game arguably the BEST hitter in the game.. $27MY for 13 years is nice but he’s deff worth about $30M+ year. If I were him I’m taking no less then $400M don’t understand these GMs lowballing offers like this, when damn well the player knows they are worth more. It’s different if young player signs early on but Soto has established himself as top hitter in the game, should be looking to make more then Trout, Harper, Cole, Tatis . Just my opinion.
If you take off what he’s expected to get in arb, that’s $334/12, or about $27.8M AAV. Considering older players who are worse hitters have gotten significantly more than that per year, I can’t blame him for saying no. I get that just one torn ACL or bad concussion could change his life and make him wish he’d said yes, but how likely is that?
It’s possible that MLB tries to follow the lead of other top leagues like the NBA and limit the years of future contracts as part of the CBA negotiation. If that happens, Soto and Boras may regret turning down a deal that won’t be possible in the future.
I hope so. MLB is long overdue for a Cap&Floor system.
IF the owners even ask for that, there will be no MLB that season.
Remember; the players union say that young players don’t get paid enough while a young player turns down more than a third of a billion dollars…
Boy that’s a huge Boras led risk.
It is a slight risk but soto already has earned 9 mil, had a high signing bonus and as the article said is basically guaranteed another 16 mil, that’s 25 mil and a good starting point to gamble a little.
Also he would need to have a tremendous injury to be non tendered in the next two years, even with an acl tear that costs him a whole season he very likely be tendered a contract so in reality he will probably already have earned like 45-60 mil after 2024 and then he probably get a 400m contract leaving him at 450m when that contract is over.
Boras is getting those contracts because he is willing to take those risks and say my way or high way.
It certainly has gone wrong for some players but on average he is winning big time and that’s why players hire him.
In baseball terms boras is not going up to the plate to take a walk or hit a single but to hit a grand slam:)
“he probably gets a 400m contract”…from whom?
If a player wants to gamble on himself, that’s fine by me, I wish him the best…but that seems like a really limited market he’d be in.
The word but means that what preceded it was not true in your mind. You are NOT wishing him the best. You are hoping he fails. Why? Jealous.?
It’s in reference to the portion of the comment that’s quoted, saying he probably gets a 400m contract (the limited market perhaps making the probably portion less likely). You should probably learn how to read before pretending you’re intelligent.
You have to consider that he is super young, he will turn 27 at the end of the 2025 season (so it counts as his age 26 season as he doesn’t turn 27 in the first half of the season).
That means a team signing him gets 4 seasons before he turns 30, that is very rare and will pay off big time.
I guess he signs a similar contract as trout did in 2019, trout is even a bit better (mostly due to defense) but soto is almost equal as a hitter albeit defensively less valuable plus he is a year younger.
Trouts extension was 426m and I see a similar contract for soto, maybe 20m less overall or so but maybe even a bit more just so that Boras gets another trophy for his wall.
Just because Trout got a decade plus contract into his 30s, it doesn’t mean that Soto or anyone else should. All bets are off in terms of future performance expectation once a player is around 30. In fact, Trout is already falling apart and will never again be a superstar. The only thing Trout does well now is batting. He’s now a liability in the field (at one of the most important spots, on top of that), he no longer steals bases, and he is no longer durable. And with this latest injury, the speed itself and base running in general may never again be close to what it once was. Soto is an ever worse investment because not only is he not close to the level of Trout as a player in terms of overall value, but he’s also 1 dimensional. He’s basically already a non-base stealing DH. Plays corner OF, which is unimportant, and plays it poorly on top of that- and isn’t a good base runner in general (in addition to not being a base stealer).
16 years for 490 mill. Would put his career service time and money at 20 years and 500 mill. Sounds pretty good to me
There’s like 5 teams in the whole sport that could afford that and still fill out the rest of the roster and be competitive.
Two thirds of the league doesn’t care about being competitive anyway, so that’s really not news. They make far more money losing.
For a top 3 hitter all 5 teams will be bidding if he becomes a free agent.
The Padres have 2 players over $30 million. If they can afford that, any team can afford one Juan Soto.
Baseball is ruled by GREED. While the fans are screwed by the ungodly prices to attend a game.
Did the cubs, astros, Orioles, pirates and Marlins lower their ticket prices when they were tanking and running 60m payrolls?
I really detest this kind of greed and I cant stand his agent
I wish him nothing but the worst
It’s hard to blame an agent and a player for taking advantage of a broken system. MLB needs to fix their system so Boras can’t play the system the way he does, and so we don’t have massive payroll differentials between the big market, medium market, and small market teams.
There also needs to be a set-up that favors the player and team re-signing the player instead of him going elsewhere. It should be where money isn’t a factor in leaving a team. The way it is now hurts 2/3rds of the MLB markets.
it’s a cop out to blame the greed on the players and make excuses for “small market” teams when owners aren’t being transparent about their revenue.
Wishing anyone the worst is worthy of a mute.
For every kid that turns down the money and makes it to free agency to collect, remember that it’s a major gamble. One unfortunate situation and it’s gone.
Look at other Boras clients in recent years who passed up extensions that would’ve taken care of themselves and their families for generations – Matt Harvey and Jose Fernandez.
Yeah, but Matt Harvey owns a drug business. He’ll be okay.
I don’t know offhand if Kris Bryant is a Boras client, but he also reportedly turned down a $200 million extension offer from the Cubs a couple of years back. He isn’t getting anywhere near that $ in free agency. Greed came back to bite him in the butt
I think Soto is the best hitter in the game and one of my favorite players. With that said, what ever happened to club loyalty? The best move for Soto in my opinion was to take the money and stay with the Nats. I cant judge the situation that I do not know enough about, but I hope and pray greed is not involved, I like Soto too much.
club loyalty? if the roles were reversed and he had expensive club options coming up that the team didn’t want to pay shouldn’t they show him loyalty too or would they in all likelihood decline those options.. It’s still a business.
It is, but there are some teams that still value loyalty, maybe even a little too much. The White Sox gave Abreu more than he was probably worth on the open market (he exceeded expectations with the MVP and has been worth the deal, but saying at the time, it was more than expected). Lynn loved the Sox so much that he was eager to sign an extension with them. Club culture, for a number of guys, will play a significant role. For others, a chance at winning might come first (Nats don’t really have that much hope in the near future). He could be saying no, not from greed, but from a desire to be in a better clubhouse or have a better chance to win another title.
Good thing your opinion is useless
F the greedy punk!
Lol he wants what he’s worth, the owners are the greedy ones.
if you have $350M on the table compared to waiting 3 years betting on $400M or even more don’t you have to take into consideration that in those 3 years you could have a very serious injury that leaves you with diminished skills and a $400M deal never comes….
He must really want out of DC
That’s kind of my thought. I mean, take him off the team and who do they really have? Put him on a borderline contender and they become true contenders. Put him on a strong contender and they’re runaway favorites. If he just wants to win, it’s smart to wait out the contract, see where the team is then, and join whomever has a need for his skills, but is already in a position to win. Money will still play a role, but I’m guessing it’s not the only thing that matters here.
Smart kid, he’s all of deserving of the contract Trout has.
If it had been 350 for ten years, he might have thought about signing but 350 for 13 years is low. He should be making 35 million a year and not 26.5 What the Nationals should do is trade him to the Rays. Get Meadows, Brujan, Baz and another highly regarded of prospect.
That was never going to be the offer because he’s only expected to make about 16M this year in arb and 27 to maybe 30 if he has another MVP-caliber season next year. So your deal would really be $304/8, or $38M/yr after that. Don’t see them going that high on an AAV.
Also, from the Nationals’ perspective, why on earth would they agree to be locked into a long-term contract and absorb that risk if the deal is market value? Teams generally get a discount because they’re taking such a long-term risk and agreeing to it earlier than they have to.
Correct decision by Soto. He’s not signing a deal that’s less than $450M…and he’ll get it.
LordD99: Are you in favor or against Yanks signing him? I’m in favor. I think they made a big mistake with Harper and he’s a chance at a redo. And I love spending Hal’s money!
What a pig! I don’t side with the owners during the lockout, but cmon. How is getting more than 350 mm dollars going to change his life? The high end players are now squeezing out everyone else. The 1% of baseball!
He will definitely get paid a lot, but just imagine how he will react if he finds out he gets less than he was offered before the lockout.
He’s in a no-lose situation. He’s going to make $50M+ the next three years in arbitration. He’ll be set for life before he signs whatever massive contract he’s going to get.
Just the starting point for the Nats. Wait til the end of the season and take another shot. If they make him a larger offer and he says no? Trade
Any annual value that doesn’t start with a 3 is going to be a non-starter. Perhaps Nats are starting PR CYA activities early with “But we offered him $350M!” being the cry, with the 13 year part being left off. Ten years would be a bargain over time, but the Nats want a steep discount or cover. Every owner must look at the Acuna deal a yell “Get me that!” at their PBO/GM.
It is a huge gamble by Soto and Boros.
If Soto has serious and/or ongoing injuries in future seasons, before his next big contract, then they both just flushed 350M down the toilet.
It has happened to other major league players who rejected lucrative offers only to get to the market a few years later and their value had plummeted down the elevator shaft to the basement (or someplace of lesser value in between).
MLB money contracts, unlike some NFL and NBA contracts, are guaranteed money contracts even if the player’s performance tanks or if he suffers devastating, even career threatening injury(s).
Not saying it will happen in this case, but it has happened and could happen again.