How Does the Manny Machado Deal Affect the Texas Rangers Future?
By Kenneth Nash
Manny Machado has inked his new decade long, $300 million deal with the Padres. What effect will that have on the Texas Rangers next offseason?
Perennial All-Star and a top player in the game, Manny Machado officially inked his 10-year, $300 million with the San Diego Padres last week. The infielder was a dream target for some Texas Rangers fans this offseason including myself but never got beyond a dream. Now that he’s locked in his future, what effect will it have on the Texas Rangers future?
Next offseason many expect, including me, for the Rangers to make a run at soon-to-be free agent 3rd baseman, Nolan Arenado. The Rockies cornerstone’s deal is up at the end of the 2019 season and extension talks between the two parties haven’t gone anywhere as reported. Arenado will be 29 heading into the 2020 season and is sure to command attention and intrigue from many clubs.
For the Rangers, Arenado looks like a perfect fit at a position where they are sure to have a hole. After the departure of future Hall of Famer Adrian Beltre this past offseason, the Rangers may be looking at a third base by committee this upcoming year. The only logical long-term fit on the roster from last season was Jurickson Profar who was dealt to the Oakland Athletics. Texas did sign veteran infielder Asdrubal Cabrera this offseason and we expect him to spend 2019 at the hot corner. But Cabrera is only on a one-year deal meaning the Rangers are back to having a hole there next season.
So back to how Machado’s deal affects the Rangers. Machado signed a 10-year contract worth $300 million in total and we’ll do the division for you, that means it’s worth $30 million a season. He also has a reported opt-out after the 5th season. Now with Texas likely in on Arenado, they aren’t going to have to hand him a decade long deal. Arenado will be 3 years older next offseason than Machado was this offseason. I’d imagine he’d look for a 6 or 7-year contract next offseason that can take him into his mid-30’s and likely the end of his career. The biggest effect on the Rangers reported target will be his asking price though.
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Machado is a career .282 hitter with an .822 career OPS and averages 31 home runs a season. Defensively, at third, he is outstanding and has 2 Gold Gloves to his credit and overall has 4 All-Star game appearances. Flip to Arenado. Nolan is a career .291 hitter with an .886 career OPS and averages 34 homers a season. Defensively, Arenado is one of the best third basemen ever, in my opinion, racking up 6 straight Gold Gloves winning every single season he’s been in the league. He’s also a 4-time All-Star and is well on his way to a Hall of Fame career.
So if Machado is commanding an average of $30 million per year, it’s safe to say that Arenado will want a similar dollar amount. I lean towards him looking to get anywhere from $30 million to $35 million and a bidding war could drive up his price even more.
I’m all-in on paying a player like Arenado pretty much whatever he wants because he’s a generational talent, but Rangers fans be wary that the price tag next offseason may shock you thanks to Manny Machado.