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Cronenworth, Padres Agree To 7-Year Extension

(Gregory Bull / Associated Press)

Cronenworth, Padres Agree To 7-Year Extension

The San Diego Padres have signed do-it-all infielder Jake Cronenworth to a 7-year/$80 million contract extension, sources told Jeff Passan.

Passan added that this contract will begin next season, buying out the first five years of Cronenworth’s potential free agency post-arbitration. Cronenworth, 29, inked this deal, which is the biggest for any player with less than four seasons of service time.

Cronenworth has played 150+ games each of the last two seasons for the Padres. For the majority of his big league career, Cronenworth has played second base, but also slides around the infield, most notably at first base. Cronenworth had a 111 OPS+ as a hitter last season, a park-adjusted stat where 100 is average. He was a guy that simply doesn’t swing and miss a whole lot, sitting in the 88th percentile in both Whiff% and Chase%, according to Baseball Savant.

Pad’s All In Push

Paying Cronenworth right now can come as a surprise to some, especially because Juan Soto is set to be an unrestricted free agent after the 2024 World Series. San Diego is also currently paying their big three- Xander Bogaerts, Manny Machado, and Fernando Tatis Jr. – to contracts all worth more than $280 million each.

It’s obvious what direction the Padres are heading. This is a franchise that wants to compete and win right now. For a team that has never won a World Series, and hasn’t appeared in one since 1998, it’s obvious that San Diego is trying to assemble the best team possible for their current championship window.

I’m interested to see what happens at this trading deadline, and this upcoming offseason with the Padres. Any baseball fan knows that owner Peter Seidler isn’t afraid of spending the big bucks. My question is, is he ready to drop $500+ on a player like Shohei Ohtani? I certainly wouldn’t put it past him.

San Diego got so close last season, falling to the Phillies in the NLCS.

One thing is for sure. While they have the four-headed monster of Soto, Tatis, Bogaerts, and Machado, the Padres are going to be spending a ton of money, like paying Jake Cronenworth. They’re trying their hardest to get a World Series in Southern California.

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