After shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. put the league on notice last season, the San Diego Padres knew they had the baseball’s “next big thing” on their hands. This is why they didn’t flinch when the time came to give the 22-year-old star a new contract.
According to ESPN’s Jeff Passan, Padres signed Tatis to a 14-year deal that is worth $350 million. Reportedly, the player will also receive a $10 million signing bonus and a no-trade clause as part of the agreement.
The Padres are expected to make the news official at some point this week.
Tatis’s contract is now the third-biggest deal in baseball history. The only two players that received bigger deals are the LA Angels’ Mike Trout and the LA Dodgers’ Mookie Betts. Trout signed a $426.5 million deal in 2019, while Betts inked a $392 million contract in 2020.
The San Diego Padres landed Fernando Tatis Jr. in 2016 in a trade that saw them send pitcher James Shields to the Chicago White Sox. Tatis quickly made his way through the minors and emerged as one of the best prospects in baseball.
Tatis received his MLB debut during the 2019 MLB season, showing promise and ending the campaign with a .317 batting average, 22 home runs, and 61 runs. The 2020 season, however, was his breakthrough year as he established himself as the star of the franchise thanks to his eye-catching shortstop play and ability at the plate.
In a shortened 2020 MLB season, Tatis had 62 hits with a .277 batting average while delivering 17 homers and 45 RBIs. He finished fourth in the NL MVP voting and ended the year with All-MLB First Team selection and Silver Slugger Award.
This was enough for the Padres to make a big commitment to Tatis and make him a part of their long-term future as they chase the Dodgers in the race for National League supremacy.