Report: Manny Machado Won't Sign New Contract if Traded

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistDecember 14, 2017

BALTIMORE, MD - SEPTEMBER 24:  Manny Machado #13 of the Baltimore Orioles bats against the Tampa Bay Rays at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on September 24, 2017 in Baltimore, Maryland.  (Photo by G Fiume/Getty Images)
G Fiume/Getty Images

Baltimore Orioles infielder Manny Machado is reportedly not expected to sign a contract extension if he's traded before the 2018 MLB season.

On Thursday, Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reported trade talks are ongoing, but there's "no expectation" there would be discussions about a new deal for Machado after completing a potential swap.

The 25-year-old Florida native will play his final year under arbitration in 2018, and he's eligible to become an unrestricted free agent at season's end.

Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reported Machado wants to become a primary shortstop before hitting the open market after playing third base for most of his time in the majors. The switch would give him more value as a free agent next offseason.

He's coming off a year where he tallied 33 home runs, his third consecutive campaign hitting more than 30, but his batting average dropped to a career-low .259. Meanwhile, his on-base percentage fell to .310, .019 points below his career average.

Nevertheless, Machado is drawing widespread attention. Buster Olney‏ of ESPN noted the New York Yankees, who recently acquired Giancarlo Stanton from the Miami Marlins, and Chicago White Sox are among the clubs showing interest.

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However, the White Sox and Yankees both have a bigger need at third base than shortstop.

Bob Nightengale of USA Today reported the O's are still "aggressively" moving forward with trade talks and could complete a deal this week.