The Tampa Bay Rays have agreed to sign right-hander Chris Archer to a six-year extension that is worth $25.5 million, according to FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal and Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. The deal also includes two team options worth $9 million and $11 million each, potentially paying Archer $45.5 million through the 2021 season, as first reported byJerry Crasnick of ESPN.com.
If Archer is a Super Two player (which is likely), he will receive the entire $25.5 million guarantee, according to Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports. If he does not reach Super Two status, then he will receive less on his deal.
Archer's deal will cover his three pre-arbitration seasons as well as his three arbitration seasons, with the potential of covering two free agent years if the Rays exercise the options for 2020 and 2021. Archer is now under Rays' control through his age-33 season at what seems like a reasonable price.
In 23 starts last season after being called up from Triple-A Durham, Archer posted a 9-7 record and 3.22 ERA en route to a third place finish in AL Rookie of the Year voting. He is expected to be a key part of the Rays' rotation for the foreseeable future, along with Alex Cobb, Matt Moore, Jake Odorizzi and Jeremy Hellickson.
Archer's deal signals a continuation of the Rays' philosophy of locking up pre-arbitration players to long-term deals. The team did the same with Evan Longoria and Moore in recent years, and could extend young players like Wil Myers or Desmond Jennings in the near future.