Rockies, Arenado finalizing 8-year, $255M extension

Nolan Arenado
Enlarge Image Nolan Arenado AP
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01 March, 2019

According to Jeff Passan of ESPN, the Rockies and Nolan Arenado are finalizing an eight-year contract extension worth more than $255 million.

The contract was also the fourth-largest overall in baseball history, eclipsed only by Giancarlo Stanton's 13-year, $325 million extension with the Miami Marlins in 2014, Manny Machado's 10-year, $300 million free agent deal with the San Diego Padres last week and Alex Rodriguez's 10-year, $275 million deal with the New York Yankees in 2007. Harper remains a free agent, and just as it appeared the Philadelphia Phillies emerged as the frontrunner, the Dodgers reportedly re-entered the picture.

Arenado says the cold free-agent market the past two seasons wasn't a big factor but "obviously it's in your head".

That hasn't been lost on Arenado, who recently said: "There are some really good baseball players out there, and it is insane to think some of these teams don't need them".

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Nolan Arenado likes where he is and the direction the Colorado Rockies are headed. While that doesn't eclipse Arizona Diamondbacks right-hander Zack Greinke's annual salary of $34.4 million, it will make him the highest-paid position player in Major League Baseball history, passing Miguel Cabrera's $31-million AAV, according to Cot's Contracts. The real answer is, none of us really know, and the Rockies giving Arenado this contract makes it harder for all the teams that are supposedly bidding on Harper. Colorado then beat the Chicago Cubs in the Wild Card game, before being swept in three games by the Milwaukee Brewers. He has led the National League in home runs three times, including 2018, when he hit.297/.374/.561 with 38 home runs and 110 RBIs. The main concern from the franchise's standpoint wasn't whether the third baseman was worth the money, but rather making sure they would get full value out of Arenado over the length of the contract.

The new deal is relatively front-loaded.

"I don't think it was a coincidence", Harding said of the timing of the signing. Many in the industry have been expecting a long-term deal since he and the Rockies settled his arbitration case last month with an agreement on a $26 million salary for 2019, a record for an arbitration-eligible player.

Over the offseason, the Rockies gave their offense a boost by bringing in Daniel Murphy to play first base.


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