While the Pittsburgh Pirates were kicking off their 2016 season today, the team was also conducting business off the field with one of their budding stars.
Pirates' outfielder Gregory Polanco agreed to a five-year contract extension that begins in 2017, as Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reported. The deal includes two club options for 2022 and 2023.
According to FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal, Polanco will be guaranteed $35 million, but if both options are exercised, the total value of the contract could be worth more than $60 million.
The 24-year-old Polanco was not even arbitration eligible until the 2018 season. The Pirates already controlled his rights through 2020, but this new deal gives them an extra three seasons.
In 2015, Polanco played his in his first full season in the Majors.
He hit a respectable .256/.320/.381 with nine home runs, 52 RBIs, and 27 stolen bases in 37 attempts over 652 turns at the plate in 153 games. FanGraphs Wins Above Replacement (fWAR) pegged Polanco's 2015 season as 2.3 wins above replacement level.
The Pirates signed Polanco as an amateur free agent out of the Dominican Republic in 2009, and he developed into a consensus top-15 prospect (via Baseball America and MLB.com) prior to the 2014 season.
As he begins to tap into his full potential at the big league level, the Pirates hope Polanco will become a better hitter to go along with his great base running and solid defense.
Polanco's extension caps a relatively quiet offseason for similar deals. Just Brandon Crawford, Dee Gordon, Salvador Perez, and Kolten Wong signed similar deals to the one Polanco reportedly agreed to today.
As baseball begins to start up, Gregory Polanco and the Pittsburgh Pirates have completed a deal to keep him in uniform for a long time.