Nolan Arenado’s contract was considered team-friendly at the time of his signing, but it’ll pay out by the end of its duration.
Arenado’s deal tacked on $15 million to the $214 million owed to him by the St. Louis Cardinals over the next seven seasons. As part of his amended contract, $50 million of the deal can be deferred and paid out through 2041. While it’s not Bobby Bonilla status, good on Arenado for potentially ensuring a solid income for himself after his playing days are behind him.
Even with those caveats, the Cardinals got a steal in Arenado. A player of his caliber would fetch a high price on the free agent market. While three years younger, Francisco Lindor just signed a 10-year, $341 million extension. Arenado is a more accomplished player, and one who seems very happy in his new home at the hot corner at Busch Stadium.
Nolan Arenado off to a great start in St. Louis
Arenado’s already quite familiar with the middle of the Cardinals’ lineup, offering protection for fellow All-Star Paul Goldschmidt. Thus far in the 2021 season, Arenado is hitting .319 with 3 home runs and 8 RBIs. His .373 OBP, .574 slugging percentage and .947 OPS are equally impressive.
Though his contract allows Arenado to opt out in 2021 or 2022, doing so would be a bold move unless he has an MVP-caliber season. While capable, Arenado will be peaking on the other side of 30. That’s not an age where players typically max out their value at the rate Arenado would be looking for. In his current deal, he has plenty of guaranteed money for the long haul.
Expect Arenado to stand pat, unless the paper trail tells him otherwise.