Manny Machado's Deal Impacts Mookie Betts


Manny Machado and the San Diego Padres agreed to a mega free agent contract bringing the right handed slugger to the 619 for a record 10 year $300 million dollar contract.  For months the baseball world has been wondering when and where both prized free agents Machado, 26, and Bryce Harper would take their services.  From a Boston Red Sox perspective, how does this impact the future free agent and reigning American League MVP Mookie Betts?

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Betts, who will become a free agent at the end of the 2020 season, agreed to a $20 million dollar deal through arbitration a few weeks ago.  After today, Machado’s mega free agent contract will impact the Red Sox when it comes time to negotiate with Betts.

At Spring Training in Ft. Myers, Betts was asked about Machado’s new contract and responded "there are still a lot of unsigned players, but it's a step in the right direction”.  Betts has been vocal about how it is important when he does agree on his deal because of how it will impact the game.  “It’s not just about me,” stated Betts.  “The guys behind me, you want to do things for them.  As players, we’re all kind of one.  We play the game.  You just have to kind of pass the baton to the next guy and think about their family.”

At this point, to think that Betts will agree to contract extension with the Red Sox will be an absolute long shot.  Red Sox President of Baseball Operations has stated he wants to work with Betts on a long term deal.

It appears Betts is willing to go into arbitration before he becomes an official free agent in a few years.  If Machado was worth $300, what will Betts command in 2 years?  Both are different types of players, so to start that is something to think about.  Also Harper, 26, has not signed yet, so that will also come into play as well.  Can we speculate that Betts will become baseball’s first $400 million dollar player?

In any sport long term deals can be risky.  The shift in the free agent market this offseason is a prime indicator of that.  The fact that Machado and Harper went into February with no deals is a clear example that baseball execs are changing how they do business.

The Red Sox and Dave Dombrowski have some decisions to make about the team.  The Sox have a handful of impact players on the roster who will become free agents in the near future.  Xander Bogaerts, Jackie Bradley Jr., Chris Sale and Rick Porcello will all be eligible from free agency either at the end of this year or next year.

One thing is for certain; Mookie Betts is not publically focused on his future free agency.  No one can predict what the market will look like in two years.  Machado clearly set the bar today, and Harper will likely reset that bar soon.  It’ll be an interesting conversation when this topic comes up regarding Betts.

No matter what, premium talent always gets paid, and Mookie Betts is going to get paid.

Follow me on Twitter @ChrisHenrique



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Boston Sports Syndicate: Manny Machado's Deal Impacts Mookie Betts
Manny Machado's Deal Impacts Mookie Betts
Boston Sports Syndicate
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