Report: Padres Not Expected to Try to Void Fernando Tatis Jr.'s Contract After Injury

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVMarch 15, 2022

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA - OCTOBER 03: Fernando Tatis Jr. #23 of the San Diego Padres strikes out in the first inning against the San Francisco Giants at Oracle Park on October 03, 2021 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Brandon Vallance/Getty Images)
Brandon Vallance/Getty Images

The San Diego Padres made waves when they agreed to a massive 14-year, $340 million contract with shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. in February 2021, and they reportedly will not attempt to get out of it following his wrist injury.

General manager A.J. Preller revealed Tatis suffered a fractured left wrist that may require surgery and could keep him out for up to three months, per AJ Cassavell of MLB.com.

Jon Morosi of MLB Network reported the team is not expected to pursue voiding Tatis' deal "even though an injury sustained while operating a motorcycle could provide the basis for doing so."

Morosi explained the team values its long-term relationship with the 23-year-old too much to do so. What's more, "the process of voiding a $340 million contract would be legally complicated even in the clearest of circumstances," and the circumstances are anything but clear in this case.

The Padres would need proof that Tatis suffered the fracture during a December accident, and he did not report the injury for three months after in part because of the league-initiated lockout.

"Tatis has pledged to the Padres that he will no longer ride on motorcycles," Morosi wrote. "I'm told the injury has given Tatis renewed perspective on obligations to the organization, teammates, fans and himself."

Tatis also addressed the injury Monday.

"It's terrible," he told reporters, per Cassavell. "I feel like everybody's disappointed, especially me. I feel like we have a pretty good chance this year as a team, and I just want to be out there for my teammates."

This is a major loss for the Padres on the field.

Tatis is one of the best players in the league and has two Silver Sluggers and an All-Star nod in his first three seasons. He slashed .282/.364/.611 with a league-best 42 home runs, 97 RBI and 25 stolen bases in 130 games last season.

San Diego doesn't have anyone else to realistically replicate his impact, but Jake Cronenworth and Ha-Seong Kim are possible candidates to fill in while he is sidelined.