Mike Trout just signed a massive new deal for $430 million. While this sounds like an absurdly high salary, the Angels may have gotten a deal. Trout is thought to be the best player in baseball and if he continues playing the way he has, he could be one of the greatest of all time.
Trout is only 26 years old and still very much in his prime. Every season he’s in the running for the MVP award. He is projected to continue being an MVP caliber player for the next few seasons. Even into his mid 30s, Trout is expected to be a top player.
Right now Trout is in the prime of his life. He’s strong and athletic and can be an effective center fielder. He may not be able to play that position forever but it’s likely he could still be a star in right or left field when his body starts to slow down. But Trout is a few years away from that. He’s still a top center fielder and one of the best hitters in the game.
Trout’s deal is for 12 years. So he’s slated to make about $35 million each season, which comes out to around $430 million over the entire contract. That’s an incredible amount of money. But if you think about it, it’s possible that Trout is still leaving some money on the table.
Trout signed on for 12 years, which means he’s likely to play the rest of his career with the Angels. So while he’s locked himself into making a ton of money over the next decade, he’s left himself without much room for negotiation. It’s possible that he could re-up his contract with the Angels in a few years. But he doesn’t have as much leverage as a player with a shorter contract. So why make the deal?
Good For Both Sides
There are a few reasons why this deal makes sense for both Trout and the Angels. Trout may be losing out on some money in the short term but in the end he may have made the right choice. In 12 years Trout turns 38. It’s hard to say what condition he’s in when he’s closing in on 40. It’s quite possible that he’s not worth $35 million a year once he’s in his late 30s.
So making less money than he’s worth now may balance out when he’s making more money than he’s worth later. The same principal makes the deal beneficial for the Angels as well.
Another reason Trout may have opted for a longer contract for less money is the perception of players from the fans’ point of view. Fans often complain about how much money baseball players make. Some like A-Rod, one of the highest paid athletes ever, was highly disliked for how much money he made.
The Angels may have had their own reasons for paying Trout what they did. Paying a player too much can put other guys off and cause tension in the locker room. If possible, it’s best to keep things somewhat equal.
The Angels definitely made a good move in keeping Trout around. He’s arguably the most valuable player in the league and now they have him for the next 12 years. And they may have even gotten away with under-paying him. But that’s yet to be determined.
What the Angels do know is that they’ve given their team a good shot at success in the future. Trout is guy you can build a lineup around. All in all it was a historic deal, one that may not be surpassed any time soon.
Why didn’t Mike Trout negotiate for more money?