We've got some more reported specifics on the White Sox contract offer to Manny Machado.
According to ESPN's Buster Olney — and later backed up by USA Today's Bob Nightengale — the South Siders have offered the 26-year-old free-agent superstar a seven-year deal worth $175 million.
The White Sox offer to Machado is for $175 million, over seven years. In some ways, their approach is like Boston's w/ J.D. Martinez last winter -- the Red Sox offered $100 million and waited for two months. If CWS offer emerges as best, a big ? is: Would Machado/NYY re-engage?— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) January 16, 2019
The #Whitesox made their 7-year, $175 million offer about two weeks ago and haven’t felt the need to alter it, and bid against themselves . Just like Martinez last year with #Redsox as @Buster_ESPN points out, whose only other known offer was a one year proposal from #Dbacks https://t.co/NJSiooQXep— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) January 16, 2019
Those numbers are in line with what Our Chuck Garfien reported earlier this week: a deal shorter than eight years in length and worth less than the previously reported dollar amount.
We've long been hearing that the White Sox reportedly prefer a deal seven years in length and wouldn't be going past that number. Nightengale reported a while back that the offer was worth between $200 million and $300 million but closer to the former than the latter. It now seems it's outside that range entirely.
This is the lone reported offer out there for Machado, shocking considering how sought after it was assumed he would be heading into this winter. The low number of bidders — the only other team supposedly still in the hunt is the Philadelphia Phillies — is equally as shocking as the apparent price at which Machado can be had. Expectations at the beginning of the offseason were that he would be getting a potentially record-breaking deal, not illogical considering how good Machado is, a four-time All Star, two-time Gold Glover and three-time top-10 MVP finisher coming off a career year in which he slashed .297/.367/.538 with 37 homers and 107 RBIs.
But the White Sox are wise to take advantage of the tiny market for one of the game's best players and to refuse to bid against themselves. Getting Machado at the reported price, it would seem, would be a steal considering what the expectations were for what it would cost to land him.
Of course, it could also leave the door open, as Olney suggests, for another suitor — such as the reportedly out New York Yankees — to step in and get a steal of their own. Machado reportedly prefers the Yankees, though the Bronx Bombers — coming off a 100-win season and good enough to potentially be the preseason World Series favorites without him — have loaded up their already crowded infield this offseason with free-agent additions Troy Tulowitzki and D.J. LeMahieu.
And, according to one report, maybe Machado missed out on his opportunity to cash in and be a part of his preferred team.
If true Chisox offer to Manny is only 175M for 7 (via @Buster_ESPN), Machado may have erred not making deal with #yankees back on dec. 19 when yanks dined w/MM and NYY was ready to talk turkey. Machado wasn’t talking $ yet but NYY would have paid more than 175. Back then anyway.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) January 16, 2019
Will seven years and $175 million be enough to best the Phillies? Their owner said early in the offseason they'd be "a little bit stupid" with their spending this winter, and they recently sat down with the other mega free agent on this market, Bryce Harper. Could the Phillies be angling to try to land both Machado and Harper? Could that make for smaller offers in an attempt to create a Miami Heat situation in the world of baseball? That's all speculation.
As of right now, it seems the White Sox remain in good position, if for no other reason than they're the only ones with an offer that's been reported. Machado will reportedly go where the most money is. Do the White Sox fit that description?