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FutureStarrManny Machado to Opt Out of $300 Million Contract
Manny Machado of the San Diego Padres will opt out of his $300 million contract after 2023 and test free agency. He'll become the first player ever to do so, and is expected to be one of the top players available on the open market following his upcoming career year.
Last season, the Padres made a statement when they acquired Juan Soto. Now it appears they may make another major acquisition this offseason. According to MLB insider Ken Rosenthal, they met twice with Dodgers free agent shortstop Trea Turner and now it appears he could be headed for San Diego, according to reports.
Turner, 38 years old, could be an invaluable addition to San Diego's roster that already features Manny Machado and Fernando Tatis. His championship experience will be invaluable as the team seeks its first World Series title since 1998.
Turner can certainly add some strength at the plate for the Padres, but his bat may lead to more extreme infield shifts which they are reportedly hoping to avoid. Regardless, Turner does offer potential value as a potential addition.
If the Padres sign him, he would become one of baseball's premier left-handed hitters and provide an invaluable defensive boost at bat. Additionally, his style fits perfectly into Preller's philosophy on patient offense and how the Padres have approached hitting under his guidance.
He's also a player who has demonstrated the ability to handle the spotlight, making him an attractive addition for a club that was swept by the Yankees in the 2022 NLCS and needs help getting back to the playoffs.
At 38 years old, he's unlikely to be available in free agency as competition for veteran free agents heats up. Therefore, the Padres must find a way to add him without increasing their already-trillion-dollar payroll.
Before anything else, the Padres top priority will be finding additional starting pitching. Their rotation is strong enough as it stands, but adding a couple quality arms could give them an edge over opponents. In particular, they could look to trade for a high-leverage pitcher who could fill in as closer or setup man and provide them with some depth in the bullpen.
Manny Machado of the San Diego Padres will opt out of his $300 million contract that was signed prior to this season, setting himself up for an enormous payday in free agency next season. This decision is expected to set him up for a tremendous career boost.
Machado's decision has been highly anticipated and could create a domino effect in the free-agent market. Reports indicate that several teams are interested in signing the 31-year-old, including the Yankees, White Sox and Phillies.
Though it's understandable why the Yankees, who have long been searching for a shortstop, are interested, it remains to be seen if they're willing to commit to an extended 10-year deal worth of $300 million. After all, Aaron Judge only just completed his nine year pact this offseason which took him until age 31; it seems reasonable that the young star might not want to play out that entire duration of his agreement.
He has become one of the best players in baseball over the last four years, displaying an uncanny ability to impact games at both third base and shortstop. A hitter with a superior approach, his record for minimizing walks - something rare to find in Major League Baseball - speaks volumes.
He has earned a reputation for making plays and has earned himself Gold Glove recognition at both shortstop and third base. A big, strong man who can make an impact in any situation, this former Gold Glove defender boasts impressive credentials.
If Machado opts to stay with the Padres, he would be an immense asset and likely help them return to the postseason in his second stint with the team. After not winning a championship since 2009, keeping Machado could pave the way for future World Series victories.
He's an astute player who won't hesitate to take risks and build his value as he enters his prime. Even though he's only 30 years old, his impressive production has already demonstrated that he can produce at a high level; therefore, he wants the highest payout on his next contract from the Padres regardless of how much is offered. In return, he hopes for long-term stability that allows him to build upon this success while staying healthy.
The San Diego Padres have a window of opportunity to build a superteam rapidly closing in. After investing significant sums of money into free-agents this winter - including Xander Bogaerts with a $300 million deal through 2033 - the team is not yet ready to start cutting corners.
As they continue to add high-dollar talent to their farm system, the Padres are prepping for what may come. They are selecting top prospects, making deals for veterans and re-signing free agents in anticipation of future success.
But as the Padres prepare to sign Machado, one thing is certain: They will do whatever it takes to keep him in San Diego. The team has a history of taking risky moves to retain players and has proven its willingness to go the extra mile for top talent.
It is no secret that A.J Preller is a master of making big moves at the trade deadline. In 2020, he reshaped the Padres roster through several major deals, and last summer traded five top minor-leaguers for Washington Nationals shortstop Juan Soto and third baseman Josh Bell.
At the winter meetings, the Padres made two more daring moves that demonstrated how much money they are willing to invest in player contracts: They signed Machado and Fernando Tatis to 10-year deals. It was an unorthodox step but one which has paid off.
They have also re-signed Michael Wacha, who was set to become a free agent in 2019. The deal is reported at $110 million over three years with either a two-year option or three player options included.
That's a lot of money to pay for a starter who will be 40 by the time he becomes eligible for free agency, but the Padres have used their large payrolls in the past to attract and retain star players such as Xander Bogaerts (re-signed in 2018).
Preller has carefully crafted deals for his other players that benefit both sides, creating a win-win scenario. Although the Padres must cut some of their payroll in order to retain Machado, there could be an alternative arrangement which allows Machado to opt out of his contract after 2023 season.
The Padres have made it known they intend to keep Manny Machado for the foreseeable future. But the superstar has made it abundantly clear that he is a free agent, and if no contract is in place by season's end, Manny will opt out of his 2014 deal.
If the Padres decide to let Machado go, he could sign a deal with another team in excess of $300 million. That would be an enormous payday for one who has been among this era's best players and on track for Hall of Fame status.
He has been a consistent force at third base, posting 50.4 WAR since 2013, and has emerged as an undisputed superstar. His 124 wRC-plus and 127 OPS-plus rank among the highest of any non-first baseman's. He's close to reaching his career high in hits, having hit more home runs than anyone other than Albert Pujols since 2013.
What's more, the 27-year-old is on track to become one of only 29 players to reach 2,500 hits and 400 home runs - joining legends such as Barry Bonds and Hank Aaron in the Hall of Fame. If he can achieve these numbers, he would join an exclusive club that includes Barry Bonds and Hank Aaron in its ranks.
But the baseball great's true worth cannot only be gauged in dollars; it also depends on his legacy.
Machado was born in the Dominican Republic, a small Latino majority country where he has faced much ridicule for being American-born. However, his decision to play for their team at this year's World Baseball Classic is an act of respect and gratitude for those who helped shape him along the way.
Machado loves spending time with his family and taking in other experiences he once took for granted. He laughs easily and smiles more than he did when he first reached the majors.
He is the type of athlete who understands what it means to be part of a team and believes in its importance. He recognizes his opportunity for greatness, and is willing to put in the work necessary for that impact to materialize.