The St. Louis Cardinals and star catcher Yadier Molina have reportedly agreed on a three-year contract that is worth between $55 million and $65 million. Ken Rosenthal reported on Thursday that the Cardinals and Molina were in the process of finalizing the deal, and Jon Heyman later confirmed that the deal was finalized.
In 2017, Molina would have been in the last year of a five-year, $75 million contract which also included a mutual option for the 2018 season which is worth a whopping $15 million. Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch wrote that Molina felt there were “too many catchers making more money” which may be the reason for this contract extension.
Also, according to Rosenthal, Molina’s deal will make him the highest-paid catcher by average annual value besting Buster Poesy who makes $18.5 annually.
The 34-year-old catcher continued to make baserunner’s lives hard in 2016 with his cannon arm, and he also proceeded to make opposing pitchers lives hard by hitting .307/.360/.427 with 38 doubles and 8 home runs in 2016. Molina was not only great in 2016, but he has been a force to be reckoned with for many years now.
This was a very good move by St. Louis since keeping Molina around will both make the Cardinals offense better, their pitching staff better, and overall defense better in 2017, and for many years to come. Yadier Molina will be 38 years old when the contract expires and it is pretty safe to say that he will be a valuable asset to them in the time they still have him.