The White Sox have refused to be outworked this off-season, making a splash seemingly every week. Thursday they announced that they have signed a six-year, $50M contract with prospect Luis Robert. The deal also includes two club options for 2026 and 2027. This is a rare extension that works out great for both sides. The White Sox can see what they have with the #3 Prospect in the MLB. If he under-performs they can still walk away without giving up a massive contract. If he lives up to his potential, they control him for two of his free agency eligible years.
Robert has financial security for life and could get up to $88M in the deal if they use both opt-ins. If he becomes a superstar then he will lose out on a few million in his first few seasons of free agent eligibility. However, for someone who has yet to make his MLB debut, Robert has security in a industry where that is quite rare. Also, he can still hit unrestricted free agency at age 30. That would allow him a chance for one big contract if he pans out.
White Sox Maintain Team Control
The White Sox have done a great job of building a young, controllable core. Here is great tweet from Jeff Passan to hammer that point home.
Failure to sign Machado helping the White Sox build a future
The White Sox fought hard to get Manny Machado in a Chicago White Sox uniform. They fell short, which is looking like a blessing this off-season. It would have been nice to plug a young superstar into the lineup. That said, they have spent their money much more efficiently than pouring hundreds of millions into one massive contract. Here is a look at some of moves they have made since losing that bidding war:
March 20, 2019: Eloy Jimenez – six-year, $43M extension with club options for 2025, 2026
November 21, 2019: Yasmani Grandal – four-year, $73M contract
November 22, 2019: Jose Abreu – three-year, $50M extension
December 11, 2019: Nomar Mazara – acquired via trade
December 20, 2019: Gio Gonzalez – one-year, $5M contract
December 22, 2019: Dallas Keuchel – three-year, $55.5M contract
December 25, 2019: Edwin Encarnacion – one-year, $12M contract
January 2, 2020: Luis Robert – six-year, $50M extension with club options for 2026, 2027
Machado signed a ten-year, $300M contract with the Padres. The White Sox used roughly the same amount of money to add eight quality baseball players. If you have read to this point, comment: Chi-Sox.