Colorado Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado will reportedly be paid a record-breaking amount before he even hits free agency, as the team announced its reached an eight-year contract extension with its star third baseman.
Jeff Passan of ESPN first reported the eight-year offer from the National League West team, and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic noted it is worth $260 million with a full no-trade clause and opt-out after three seasons.
Passan provided additional details:
Bob Nightengale of USA Today also reported the extension plans, noting it will replace the contract that was set to pay him $26 million this year. The new deal will break Miguel Cabrera's $31 million record for annual salary for a position player.
Arenado has been with the Rockies his entire six-year career and didn't seem in a hurry to leave, per Nightengale:
"It's such a great place. I really enjoy the fact there's a comfortability here. You know the coaches. You know the players. Some of my best friends are on this team.
"I grew up here in this organization, so it feels like home in a way. I've been here since the tide has changed, and that's a really good feeling. I was part of that change.
"You want to win in a place where you've been all of your life."
Locking down Arenado makes sense. He's the face of the franchise and is just 27 years old with plenty of time remaining in his prime. He is a four-time Silver Slugger, four-time All-Star and six-time Gold Glover, and is one of the league's best two-way players.
Colorado reached the playoffs the last two seasons in large part because of his presence.
Arenado has played at least 156 games in each of the last four years and averaged 40 home runs and 126 RBI per season in that span.
Signing this extension also allows him to avoid free agency, which has been slow to develop this offseason for notable names such as Bryce Harper, Dallas Keuchel and Craig Kimbrel. Each is still unsigned with spring training games underway.