Carlos Correa's strange free agency finally came to an end on Wednesday when he officially signed his six-year, $200 million contract with the Minnesota Twins after passing his physical.
Speaking to reporters about his free-agent journey, Correa said it was "shocking to me" when the San Francisco Giants and New York Mets backed out of their agreements with him due to concerns over his ankle.
"It was definitely an emotional roller-coaster," he added.
The Giants were the first team that reached an agreement with Correa on a deal worth $350 million over 13 years. He was set to be officially introduced by the club on Dec. 20, but the team postponed his press conference due to an issue with his physical.
As the Giants wavered on their agreement, the Mets swooped in with a 12-year, $315 million deal that Correa agreed to on Dec. 21.
"We needed one more thing, and this is it," Mets owner Steve Cohen told Jon Heyman of the New York Post about the deal with Correa. "This was important … This puts us over the top. This is a good team. I hope it's a good team!"
Three days later, The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal and Dan Hayes reported New York's medical staff raised concerns about the long-term health of Correa's ankle that gave the Giants pause.
The issue stems from an injury Correa suffered in the minors during the 2014 season. He had surgery to repair a fractured right fibula and ligament damage, but it hasn't given him any issues so far in his MLB career.
Hayes noted on Dec. 22 that Correa mentioned the plate he had inserted in his right leg after limping off the field when he was thrown out trying to steal a base on Sept. 20. Correa stayed in the game.
"He just hit my plate," Correa said. "I had surgery and he hit it. Just kind of felt numb. Vibrating. So I was just waiting for it to calm down. It was a little scary, but when I moved I knew I was good."
As negotiations with the Mets stalled out, Correa's camp went back to the Twins. His deal with Minnesota guarantees him $200 million for six years, but it includes vesting options that could make it worth $270 million over 10 years.
"We were unable to reach an agreement," the Mets said in a statement on Wednesday. "We wish Carlos all the best."
Correa originally joined the Twins last year when he signed a three-year, $105.1 million deal that included opt outs after each of the first two seasons. The 28-year-old hit .291/.366/.467 with 22 homers and 64 RBI in 136 games during the 2022 campaign.
The Twins finished third in the AL Central last season with a 78-84 record. They have missed the playoffs in each of the previous two years after winning back-to-back division titles in 2019 and 2020.