Apparently we are at the point in professional sports where 23-year-old baseball players are turning down $100 million in cold hard cash. We knew it was coming. It was just a matter of time. But that doesn’t make it any more absurd.
According to Sports Illustrated’s Tom Verducci, Cleveland Indians shortstop Francisco Lindor just recently turned down an extension that would have paid him roughly $100 million.
Lindor, all of 23 years old, has accrued one year and 100-plus days of service time. This means he won’t hit free agency until after the 2021 season. The highest contract awarded to a player with his service time is the seven-year, $58 million deal fellow shortstop Andrelton Simmons signed with his former Braves team back in 2014. Needless to say, Lindor’s offer would have shattered that.
It makes some sense that Lindor would hold off a bit before inking pen to paper on a new deal. He will be arbitration eligible in 2019 and will likely receive a hefty raise throughout that process. He also received a signing bonus of nearly $3 million in his first deal with the Indians.
The youngster is coming off a 2016 season that saw him hit .301 with 15 homers, 78 RBI and 19 stolen bases for the defending American League champs. He’s surely banking on continued progression from here on out.