Some of the biggest questions when dealing with an Eric Hosmer contract is the amount of money and the number of years. Could the Kansas City Royals imitate something similar to Ian Kennedy and most recent signee Yu Darvish though?
When talking with fans it is clear that the biggest concern is contract length and price. The Royals have been rumored to have offered a contract in the range of seven-years, $147 million. When looking at the breakdown of the Royals salary for the present year and future, a contract that is a yearly average of $21 million is not that hard to cover. However, for those who believe it is perhaps the newest Chicago Cubs pitcher, Yu Darvish, has opened the doors to a new idea.
Darvish signed a six-year, $126 million contract. The catch is that an opt-out is apart of the deal after the second year. This means that Darvish could become a free agent after the 2019 season.
Who has rights to the opt-out after two-years has yet to be announced. It seems logical to believe that the opt-out would be up to Darvish though. As for the breakdown, no one knows whether the contract is front-loaded or back-loaded as of right now.
Why this matters
The Royals did a similar deal when they signed pitcher Ian Kennedy. In 2016 they signed Kennedy to a five-year, $70 million contract. Kennedy had an opt-out clause apart of his contract that allowed him to become a free agent after the 2017 season. In August he decided not to exercise his opt-out, claiming that it would be “pretty stupid” for him too.
Perhaps the Royals could do something similar with Eric Hosmer. Whether it is accurate or not, Hosmer’s camp is claiming that he wants a contract in the nine-year range. Unfortunately for him, he has not received a contract close to that. The San Diego Padres and Royals have only offered seven-year deals.
If the Royals wanted they could try to keep the original offer to Hosmer, a seven-year, $147 million contract, but put an opt-out clause for him after year two or three. This would allow him to show that his value is higher than teams believe, and allow him to become a free agent sooner to get that next contract.
Hosmer might be more tempted to sign a contract on the table right now after the Darvish contract. With his seven-year, $147 million contract, Hosmer would be signing the most lucrative contract of the off-season.
Another reason why he might be more willing now to sign the contract is due to the fact that it seems as if the owners are trying to “correct” the market. They have noticed how absurd some contracts have been and are tightening up on the length and amount of contract. The fact that a $147 million contract could be the highest of the off-season is surprising based on past years. Hosmer might realize that he became a free agent at the “wrong” time, and the seven-year deal might be the best deal he can get.
What do you think Royals fans? Would you be more on board with an Eric Hosmer extension if the team put an opt-out clause in? Do you think the Yu Darvish contract will push Hosmer to sign? Let us know your thoughts!