70 games. That is how many games Wander Franco has played in the bigs and he is already potentially getting ready to sign a MASSIVE deal with the Tampa Bay Rays. It's being reported by a news outlet in the Dominican Republic that the Rays have already presented this offer to Franco, a 10 year deal worth almost $200 million. Not bad for a guy who hasn't even played half of a full season. It's not a bad deal at all for Franco, he'll be 30 when the deal is up and will have another chance at a massive payday, and it's actually a really team friendly deal for the notoriously cheap Rays. $200 million for a guy like Franco is a bargain.
Franco just wrapped up his rookie season where he finished third in Rookie Of The Year voting with a .288 average, 7 homers, 39 driven in and had an insanely impressive on-base streak during the season. He went 43 games in a row getting on base, tying Frank Robinson for the longest on-base streak by a player 20 or younger. He's still a kid and he's only going to get better.
It's a no-brainer for the Rays to try and lock up the former top prospect in baseball, and they dont want to waste any time at all. He isn't arbitration eligible until 2024 and won't be a free agent until 2028 but they're trying to lock him down for the long run, and you can't really blame him. If he waits a few years he could be sniffing around a deal like Fernando Tatis Jr. got from the Padres, but I'm sure its difficult for a 20 year old to turn down a $200 million deal when it's sitting right in front of him. Love how the Rays are getting out ahead of it too. Lock these guys up before they can even think of free agency and then you end up letting them walk and only getting a comp pick or a shitty player package in a trade like the Orioles did with Manny Machado.
The Rays do love their young players, they've signed a few big names when they were still super young and cheaper for team friendly deals, they're trying to do the same with Wander. The previous high for a contract given out by the Rays was the 6-year, $100 million deal for Evan Longoria, that may be chump change to Wander soon. Now we sit back and wait to see what happens, it was said his camp will counteroffer so that number could go up, the years could too. This is such a unique case too, we've seen guys like Ronald Acuña Jr. sign deals like this super early in their career, but 70 games is a cup of coffee.
Do we think Franco is stressed out about the potential of a big deal coming soon? Nah, he's back home in the DR playing some fast pitch softball and hitting balls to Mars. I'd give him an extension right now cuz of this video.