It’s about damn time one of the big fishes in MLB free agency is going somewhere. Manny Machado has found a new home as he has signed a guaranteed $300 million contract for 10 years with the San Diego Padres. Machado’s deal stands the largest free agent contract in North American sports history, perhaps for now though since Bryce Harper is still unsigned.
Now, it will take almost a decade to determine who won and lost the signing of Machado but it’s still fun to see who’s the winners and losers in the moment.
Manny Machado: Well, I mean come on, this was an obvious one. You’re getting paid $30 million a year to play baseball. Machado gets the money, gets to play in a beautiful city, nice ballpark and becomes the centerpiece of an organization for many years to come. Another big win for Machado is that if the Padres aren’t winning and Machado is still playing to his MVP type level, he can opt-out in five years and look for even more money for a contender.
Bryce Harper: Harper is the last star free agent left and since Machado has set the market at $300 million, Harper will be looking for something just north of that. There’s already reports of Harper turning down $300 millon deals from a couple of teams. Also, since all the attention is off Machado, all the teams must turn to Harper if they want a star player in his mid-20s.
Future Star Free Agents: The MLB is going to see Kris Bryant, Mike Trout, Aaron Judge, Mookie Betts, Francisco Lindor, Nolan Arenado and many more become free agents. All these players are going to see the cash come in thanks to Machado’s deal and eventually Harper’s. We can see players like Bryant, Judge, Arenado and a few others see $325 million plus, but imagine Betts and Trout where they can demand all the money in the world plus more.
Chicago White Sox: This is my favorite part of the whole Machado signing. White Sox fans were so sure Machado was there’s but instead get their hearts ripped out. The White Sox have pursued Machado and Harper all year but refuse to pay $300 million.
The Sox will have to keep building through the farm system, but that won’t stop their fan base from another disappointing offseason. But at least they signed Machado’s friend, Jon Jay, and his brother-in-law, Yonder Alonso.
NL West: The Padres ended up losing 96 games last year and haven’t made the postseason since 2010 but adding a superstar to a last place team with the best farm system in the MLB is dangerous for many years. The Padres probably won’t see postseason baseball this year, but next year could be a different story as they can make moves for pitching and develop their prospects. The Dodgers, Giants, Rockies and Diamondbacks must watch out as the Padres won’t be an easy team to face much longer.