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Cardinals close to extension with Paul Goldschmidt, per report

Another high profile name appears set to sign a big money extension

MLB: Spring Training-Philadelphia Phillies at St. Louis Cardinals Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

While the free agent market outside of Bryce Harper and Manny Machado was fairly uneventful, lately there has been a flurry of extensions. Most of these deals have been deals that only brought marginal amounts of team control, but gave the players involved some financial security and the teams cost certainty given how the money awarded in arbitration has varied so widely the last couple of years.

We have seen several deals lately with players that still had a significant number of years left on their contracts. Even Eloy Jimenez, who has yet to play in the major leagues, got paid by the White Sox. However, today’s deal is more in line with the extension that Nolan Arenado got from the Rockies in terms of the timing.

The Diamondbacks, now firmly in rebuild mode, traded star first baseman Paul Goldschmidt to the Cardinals this past offseason. Goldschmidt was set to hit free agency after the 2019 season, not unlike Nolan Arenado, but at the time of the trade, it was clear that St. Louis had a strong interest in keeping Goldschmidt around beyond the 2019 season.

While not a mega deal like Machado or Harper got, Goldschmidt is older (31) and is firmly a first baseman even if he is one of the better defensive ones in the league. Moreover, he is still making a nick chunk of change. We still don’t know about any incentives or escalators in Goldschmidt’s new deal, but at roughly $22 million per year, he represents a significant financial investment by the Cardinals as they look to push for contention in a tough National League Central.

In 158 games for the Diamondbacks in 2018, Paul Goldschmidt posted a .290/.389/.533 line with 33 home runs and 95 RBI. He has been a perennial All-Star and Gold Glover at first base and has posted a 133 wRC+ or higher in six straight seasons.