Ryan Howard has signed a 3 year, $54 million contract. Howard will make $15 million in 2009, $19 million in 2010 and $20 million in his walk year, 2011.
There is a clause that would require the Phillies to pay Howard $1 million if he is traded before Nov. 1, 2010. There’s been a lot of talk about Howard leaving because he’ll get too pricey for the Phillies. This deal would make it harder to trade him
Howard’s base salary would increase by $1 million in 2010 and 2011 if he was named MVP in the preceding season. There are also bonuses for World Series MVP ($100,000), LCS MVP ($50,000), Gold Glove ($50,000), Silver Slugger ($100,000), and an All-Star selection $50,000.
Howard’s deal will earn him an average of $18 million per season over the next three years. He will be the highest-paid Phillie, and the second-highest paid first baseman in all of baseball, behind only the Yankees’ Mark Texeira.
Here is a list (compliments of David Murphy) of the top ten contracts in baseball. Note Howard at number 10. Also note Howard will never make a salary of $18 million, it’s an average.
1. Alex Rodriguez, Yankees, $27.5 million
2. C.C. Sabathia, Yankees, $23 million
3. Johan Santana, Mets, $22.9 million
4. Mark Teixeira, Yankees, $22.5 million
5. Miguel Cabrera, Tigers, $19.037 million
6. Derek Jeter, Yankees, $18.9 million
7. Carlos Zambrano, Cubs, $18.3 million
8. Andruw Jones, Dodgers, $18.1 million
9. Torri Hunter, Angels, $18 million
T-10. Vernon Wells, Blue Jays, $18 million
T-10. Barry Zito, Giants, $18 million
T-10. Ryan Howard, Phillies, $18 million
The contract really seems to makes a lot of sense for both sides. The Phillies were watching Howard’s request become astronomical. If they stuck with arbitration they could be looking at a number in the $20-30 million range.
Howard, meanwhile will make enough money to live off for life. He has no risk of loosing money due to injury or poor production. If he keeps up the production in these three years, he’s looking at A-Rod money his walk year.
The Phillies Opening Day payroll will now break the $130 million mark.
Howard will not be available to the media until later this week. He is in Florida, but is not at Bright House Networks Field today. Ruben Amaro Jr. spoke to the media at 2:30.