Well, the San Francisco Giants have their man locked up. The defending World Champions will go into the 2013 season with reigning NL MVP Buster Posey signed for the next nine years, at a total cost of $167 million. Posey already had agreed to a one-year, $8 million deal for 2013 to avoid arbitration, and his extension will kick in starting in 2014. $159 million in new money is coming to Posey.
The details of the contract are mind-numbing. After the $8 million he'll make this year, Posey will make $12.5 million in 2014, $16.5 million in 2015, $20 million in 2016, and $21.4 million over the final five years of the deal. He also gets a full no-trade clause, a $7 million signing bonus, and a $22 million club option for 2022 that has a buyout of $3 million, pushing the total max value of the contract to $193 million before taking any incentives into account. Whew.
Posey's contract is the longest and most expensive in Giants history, the longest contract ever given to a catcher, and the second most expensive contract ever given to a catcher behind Joe Mauer's eight year, $184 million deal signed in 2010.
Mauer's extension took effect starting in 2011, his age 28 season, and is running until the end of his age 35 season. In contrast, Posey's extension will take effect in 2014, his age 27 season, and will run until his age 34 season while paying Posey a lower average value than Mauer is getting from the Twins. In contrast to that contract, it's a huge win. But in comparison to the extensions signed by Yadier Molina and Miguel Montero over the last year or so, there's a much larger chance for things to go wrong for the Giants than for the Cardinals or Diamondbacks, especially consdiering that Posey already broke his ankle once.
There's a lot of risk in this deal for the Giants, but after a record arbitration award this winter, I bet Brian Sabean could see the writing on the wall that Posey was going to keep setting records over his next three years of arbitration and that overpaying later might be a better move than having to pay a mint over the next three seasons.