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Will the Minnesota Twins sign off on the contract they’ve offered to Carlos Correa?

It’s been quite a ride for Carlos Correa, but it appears that it’s finally over with the star set to put pen to paper on a 6-year deal worth $200 million.

Will the Minnesota Twins sign off on the contract they’ve offered to Carlos Correa?
Carmen MandatoAFP

At long last, one of MLB’s biggest free agent sagas in recent memory has finally come to an end. The interesting thing, however, the star in question never actually made a move. Instead, he re-signed with team that he was trying to leave.

Carlos Correa commits to Twins in $200 million deal

According to reports, Carlos Correa has agreed to what in reality is his third free-agent deal of the offseason, a six-year, $200 million contract that will see him return to the Minnesota Twins. As is now well documented, the star shortstop had previously struck verbal agreements with the San Francisco Giants and New York Mets, but would see both deals collapse due to concerns about his physical health, namely an ankle injury which he suffered earlier in his career. As per reports, the deal includes options for the 2029 through 2032 seasons, with each becoming guaranteed if Correa records 502 or more plate appearances the previous season. That’s to say, that the vesting options could in fact take the deal’s value to as high as $270 million across 10 seasons.

It’s most definitely worth noting, that like the two aforementioned arrangements that Correa had in place, the officialization of the contract will depend on the results of a physical. That in itself would normally be a formality, but in Correa’s case, we’ve seen how it’s become a major issue. To be specific, Correa broke his leg while playing in the minor leagues during the 2014 season. Though he has never missed time, as a result of surgery which was performed to repair the leg, he did indicate feeling discomfort due to the metal plate he has inside, after a hard slide during a September game.

How did Carlos Correa get here?

As we mentioned before and have previously reported on here on AS USA, the 28-year-old was without doubt one of the most sought-after free agents this winter. Indeed, when he seemingly agreed to a 13-year, $350 million deal with the Giants on December 13th, many teams around the league cursed their luck. Yet, it was not to be and we soon learned that because of his said same injury, the Giants were no longer keen. Then came the New York Mets. Reports indicated, that in the early hours of December 21st, Mets owner Steve Cohen and Correa’s agent, Scott Boras negotiated a 12-year, $315 million pact while Cohen was vacationing in Hawaii.

With a coup apparently, complete it was said that Correa would be moved to third base to play alongside fellow Puerto Rican superstar Francisco Lindor. Yet, once again, it was not to be as Correa’s ankle was the subject of scrutiny one more time. With that, things seemed to stall and continued to do so until the news we’ve brought you today. What we can expect to see, is Corea returning to his favored position of shortstop while undoubtedly taking a more central role in the leadership of what is a talented, but young Twins team.

The devil is in the details of Carlos Correa’s deal

As you can plainly see, Correa’s agreement with the Twins actually cuts the term of the deal in half, which it could be said does away with any concerns about longevity. The latest agreement slashes the term of the deal in half, perhaps allaying some of the concerns about durability that tripped up the Giants and Mets. On the other hand, the Twins already had a pre-existing relationship with the shortstop and naturally, would have performed a physical on him less than a year ago when he joined the team as a free agent in March of 2022. Indeed, it’s interesting to note that Correa finally settled for a more conventional contract rather than following the trend of massive decade-long deals that have become common. As far as ranking goes, Correa’s deal has an average annual value that comes in at fourth behind Justin Verlander, Aaron Judge and Jacob deGrom.

Ultimately, Correa seems to have played his cards right in what is his second run around the free agency market. While both the Giants and the Mets openly shared their appreciation for the star, neither were willing to budge on the term of the contract. In the end, though he’s seen a decrease in what he will earn, it’s not been nearly as significant as the decrease in the actual length of the contract, which is definitely a win for his side. As Cohen said after appearing to have closed the deal with Correa, “We needed one more thing, and this is it.” Unfortunately, they didn’t get their man and one has to wonder if they will be made to pay for that failure in the future.

Is Carlos Correa worth all the fuss?

Though it’s true that Correa has missed time due to injuries in his career, that was really only a minor back problem that sidelined him in 2018 and ‘19. A longtime Astros player, the star was a key member of the 2017 World Series team which later became embroiled in the sign-stealing scandal and is without doubt, one of the best defensive shortstops in the league. That’s without mentioning the kind of numbers that he consistently puts on the board. Indeed, Correa is - according quite literally one of the game’s 20 best position players in 2023.