New York Mets’ star Francisco Lindor is laughing all the way to the bank.
After weeks of negotiations and a stalemate in recent days, the American baseball team and All-Star shortstop agreed on Thursday (AEDT) to a 10-year contract extension worth $AUD452 million ($US341 million), according to an industry source.
The deal was completed just before Lindor’s imposed deadline for negotiations expired.
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The contract is the largest in franchise history, obliterating the eight-year deal worth $183 million that David Wright received before the 2013 season.
Including this year’s salary, Lindor will receive $480 million over 11 years.
The $452 million is $1.33 million more than Fernando Tatis Jr. received this off-season in his 14-year deal from the San Diego Padres. Lindor’s deal includes a $27.8 million signing bonus and a partial no-trade clause.
The Mets had previously offered Lindor a 10-year contract worth $430 million. Lindor countered with a 12-year proposal worth $510 million, that would have eclipsed the deal Mookie Betts received from the LA Dodgers last year.
The Mets will face the Washington Nationals on Thursday night to begin the regular season. Lindor had indicated he would head to free agency if a deal wasn’t in place before the opener.
“We love Francisco and would love to be his teammate for a long time,” fellow Mets star Brandon Nimmo said this week.
Francisco Lindor is very, very rich.Source:AFP
“But he gets to make those decisions, so we want what is best for him and the club.”
The 27-year-old Lindor dined with Mets majority owner Steve Cohen last weekend at pre-season training, leading to a sense of optimism a deal was close. The Mets had initially been in the $400 million neighbourhood with their offer, but increased it.
If Lindor declined an extension he would have ventured into a loaded shortstop market later this year. Corey Seager, Trevor Story, Carlos Correa and Javier Baez are among the other shortstops in the league who can become free agents.
On Tuesday, Mets first baseman Pete Alonso suggested Lindor was worth $530 million. Mike Trout, who signed a new contract with the Angels before the 2019 season, is the only MLB player in that stratosphere. Trout received a 12-year deal worth $564.7 million.
“We have (Lindor) now, but if he were to choose to go to free agency and if he feels that is the best business decision for him, then more power to him,” Alonso said.
“I would be happy if we were to get him, but also I would be happy if he were to exercise his right to become a free agent after this year. Whatever he thinks is his best business decision, I am backing him 100 per cent.”
Alonso’s prayers were answered and he’ll be teaming up with Lindor again this season.
This article originally appeared in The New York Post and was reproduced with permission.
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