The Chicago White Sox signed shortstop Tim Anderson to a six-year, $25 million contract extension Tuesday morning, a high-ranking executive with direct knowledge of the deal told USA TODAY Sports.
This will go down as the largest contract ever given to a player with less than one year of service time. It also means the White Sox could have their shortstop locked up through his prime years at an extremely large discount. I’m totally for younger players getting their paper as early as possible, and I think it shows good faith from the organization even though they’re ultimately trying to save money in the long run. But this seems dumb.
The Sox have done this before, signing pitchers Chris Sale and Jose Quintana to extensions way before they need to so they don’t lose them to free agency during their prime production years. It’s a gamble that paid off in the cases of Sale and Quintana, but Anderson is a different story because you don’t need a magnifying glass to realize the White Sox suck at drafting and developing positional players.
What’s interesting/stupid is that Sox brass is so confident in Anderson that they don’t even want to wait to see what happens when the league adjusts to him. Normally a guy who walks thirteen times in 410 AB’s doesn’t scream consistency. This also means the Sox believe Anderson will eventually earn a contract similar to what Carlos Correa and Francisco Lindor will demand in a few years. In the words of the annoying Hawk Harrelson, that’s a stretch.