Wander Franco signs 11-year extension, largest contract in franchise history

Monday afternoon saw a historic moment in the existence of the Tampa Bay Rays as shortstop Wander Franco officially signed the largest contract in franchise history, an 11-year, $182 million extension.

Franco, the 20-year old phenom who made his MLB debut in June, lived up to all expectations placed on him from the entire baseball community and then some.

As such, he was rewarded handsomely with an 11-year extension with $182 million in guaranteed money and 12th year club option and incentives that could take it up to $223 million in total.

After a rough start to his MLB career, setting aside the home run he hit in his first MLB game, Franco would go on to tie Frank Robinson for the longest on-base streak of any MLB player age 20 or younger, ever, at 43 games.

In doing so, he set the American League record, blowing Mickey Mantle’s 36-game on-base streak out of the water.

He finished the 2021 season hitting .288/.347/.463 in 70 games played with a 2.5 fWAR, 127 wRC+, seven home runs, 39 RBI and 53 runs scored, earning a third-place finish for the 2021 AL Rookie of the Year.

Above is the contract breakdown for Franco’s extension. The 2026 season will be the first where Franco will make over $10 million if he stays past then, he’ll become the first Rays player to make $20 million in one season.

We’ve never seen the Rays spend anywhere close to this amount of money for one player, not even Evan Longoria, as his extension was just $100 million.

Regardless of whether or not Franco will be with the franchise for the full duration of the contract, the commitment from the front office shows a shift in mentality for the future.

If they’re willing to shell out $182 million for one player, then that player must be incredibly special, and we’ll be seeing that play out hopefully over the next decade.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: