Carlos Correa reportedly agreed to his third free agent contract of the offseason, this time a six-year, $200 million deal to return to the Minnesota Twins. The all-star shortstop had previously made tentative deals with the San Francisco Giants and New York Mets, only to see deals stalled and then fell apart due to concerns raised during his medical.
According to the Associated Press, the deal includes options for seasons 2029 through 2032, each of which becomes guaranteed if Correa records 502 or more record appearances in the previous season. The vesting options could make a deal worth up to $270 million over 10 seasons.
This deal, like the previous two, is under consideration — a usually negligent hurdle that, in Correa’s case, has turned into an existential threat. While teams are prohibited from releasing a player’s medical information, reports have focused on a broken leg Correa suffered while playing in the minor leagues in 2014. shocked after a hard slide in the September game.
Correa, the 28-year-old who started the winter as one of the sport’s most valuable free agents, agreed on December 13 to a 13-year, $350 million contract with the Giants. opening press conference, and the Mets swooped in into the early hours of December 21st. Team owner Steve Cohen and agent Scott Boras reportedly agreed to a 12-year, $315 million deal while Cohen vacationed in Hawaii.
With the Mets, Correa was expected to move to third base to play alongside fellow Puerto Rican superstar Francisco Lindor. But soon enough, the Mets also raised questions about Correa’s physical, and the deal remained in limbo throughout the holidays and January. In Minnesota, Correa will reassume control of the shortstop position and is likely to take on a major leadership role in a younger team.
The latest deal cuts the deal in half, possibly alleviating some of the longevity concerns that have been confusing the Giants and Mets. (Of course, the Twins gave Correa a physical less than a year ago when he joined them as a free agent in March 2022.) The $200 million guarantee gives him the highest annual salary of any touted shortstop, which included Traya Turner. , Xander Bogarts and Dansby Swanson, but smaller than Turner and Bogarts.
Where Correa initially followed the trend of decades of mega-deals, he will now sign a more conventional deal – if this one is finally completed. Average annual deal value ranks fourth among winter free agents behind Justin Verlander, Aaron Judge and Jacob de Grom.
This is Correa’s second consecutive winter walk through protracted free will. Until 2022, he was keen to secure a long-term deal, but instead watched Corey Seeger, Markus Semen and Javier Baez sign on. After the MLB lockout ended, he surprised everyone by landing a short-term deal with the Twins that allowed him to opt out and re-enter the market this year. He came out and hit .291 with 22 homers and 140 OPS+ in 136 games for Minnesota and then threw his hat into the ring again – looking and acting like a franchise player.
Against all odds, the saga of this second free agency has overshadowed the original. Both the Giants and Metz seemed to see the bright light of the founding star. The Giants turned to Correa after their pursuit of New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge was unsuccessful. The Mets had a lot of star power, but as Cohen told the New York Post after showing up to enlist Correa’s services, “We needed one more thing, and that was it.”
Correa has missed time with injuries in his career, but prior to his physical this winter, the most troubling of those was a back problem that cost him time in 2018 and 19. The long-time Astros shortstop — a key member of the 2017 World Series team, later embarrassed by the sign-theft scandal — is regarded as one of the best defense shortstops in the Majors and consistently has a stellar record on offense. Everything is packed together this means that the player’s FanGraphs Steamer system is among the top 20 players with the best positions in the game in 2023..