Wander Franco’s 12-year contract extension with the Tampa Bay Rays that guarantees him $ 182 million and could pay him a maximum of $ 223 million is shocking in one respect: that the Rays made that kind of financial outlay, even for a superstar. flourishing like Franco.
Not only is it the largest contract in Rays history, wiping out the six-year, $ 100 million extension Evan Longoria signed after the 2012 season, but it is easily the largest ever awarded to a player with less than one year of service, surpassing the eight-year, $ 100 million contract that Ronald Acuña Jr. signed with the Atlanta Braves. If Franco receives the 12-year option, it becomes the 24th $ 200 million contract in Major League Baseball history.
This is a franchise that since its inception in 1998 has delivered a total of $ 348 million in free agency, according to Cot’s Contracts. Now the Rays are committing more than half of that number to a single player. It’s a franchise-altering move and shows their belief that Franco will continue to build on his impressive rookie performance, hitting .288 / .347 / .463 at age 20, including .338 / .393 / .541 in his later years 33 games, part of a stretch in which he reached base in 43 consecutive games.