clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

The Rays did WHAT? Reactions to Franco signing

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

Bowling Green Hot Rods vs Burlington Royals Set Number: X162639 TK1

The Rays have on many occasions been willing to sign promising early year players longer term, paying them more in team controlled years in exchange for some cost control in at least a few free agent years. Contracts with Evan Longoria, Ben Zobrist, James Shields, Chris Archer, Kevin Kiermaier and Brandon Lowe all followed this pattern.

But the player in question was never twenty years old, the number of years was never double digits, and the total dollar amount has never hit $200 million.

So when press reports about Wander’s contract, which could be for as long as 12 years and worth up to $233 million, baseball pundits reacted. And reacted, mostly, with enthusiasm.

Our beat writers Adam Berry and Mark Topkin are, as of this writing, still describing the deal as tentative (apparently Wander must pass a physical). But Topkin did note its historic nature:

Most commentators recognized the mutual benefit of this contract. Andy McCullough and the Athletic have the best news of all as they give thumbs up to this deal: Rays fans can comfortably buy a Franco jersey!

At ESPN, David Schoenfield also thinks Franco is well worth it, and notes that a long term contract doesn’t necessarily mean a long tenure with the Rays, since the Rays have indeed signed and later traded players (he mentions David Price, but Price of course never signed an extension).

There were also some who focused on Wander’s great slice of 2021 and his high ceiling:

And of course we can remember highlights of his career thus far.

Big moments in Durham:

And in St. Petersburg

And of course his teammates are looking forward to hanging out with him in whatever new luxury car he buys!

We’ll add new links to this as we see them.