Manny Machado will be the face of the San Diego Padres for a very, very long time.
The superstar third baseman is reportedly signing a massive 11-year contract worth $354 million to remain with the Padres, according to MLB insider Jeff Passan.
BREAKING: Star third baseman Manny Machado and the San Diego Padres are finalizing an 11-year, $350 million contract extension, sources familiar with the deal tell ESPN. Machado helped turn around the franchise. He’ll stay as the ascendant Padres seek their first championship.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) February 26, 2023
The six-time All Star said earlier in Spring Training that he was intending on opting out of the final five years remaining on his old deal with San Diego to test the free-agency market and potentially land more money.
The Padres’ front office deserves a lot of credit for getting Machado to agree to this extension before the season got underway. I’m sure the other 29 teams in the MLB would have offered Machado similarly huge deals if he had ever gotten to the point of opting out.
Had the Padres’ staff waited for the season to end to begin these negotiations, he possibly could have left them. Props to Padres’ chairman Peter Seidler and company for resolving Machado’s contract situation before any other team had an opportunity to lure him away. He’s a cornerstone player for their franchise, whom they could not afford to lose if they want to win their first World Series title. (RELATED: Mississippi State Pitcher Jurrangelo Cijntje Can Throw Heaters With Either Hand)
It seems like a World Series title is the only thing holding Machado back from being known as an all-time great. He’s won almost every award there is to win during his career but has yet to be a part of a team that has won it all. It’s the one thing missing from his legacy so far.
I believe Machado’s best opportunity at becoming a champion is with San Diego, especially right now. Over the last year, the Padres added All Stars Xander Boegarts and Juan Soto to their roster to play alongside Machado and Fernando Tatis Jr. Soto and Boegarts had already won championships prior to their arrival to San Diego and know what it takes to win it all. They both have career batting averages of over .285 and are widely recognized as elite MLB players. With Boegarts, Soto, Machado, Tatis Jr., and San Diego’s stout pitching staff, it wouldn’t surprise me if they won it all this season.
In 2022, Machado had a batting average of .298, 32 home runs and 102 RBIs, according to Baseball Reference. He’s easily a top-five player in baseball. Every single penny of his extension is worth it considering what he brings to the table.
At the end of the day, the money the Padres offered Machado was just too good to walk away from. They’ve secured their superstar third baseman for the long haul.