The Kansas City Royals made a major investment into the future of their franchise on Monday.
The team and shortstop Bobby Witt Jr. agreed to a 14-year contract extension that includes 11 guaranteed years and three years with options. ESPN first reported the deal, which is worth $288.7 million and could be worth $377.7 million with the options.
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The Royals later announced the deal.
“We are extraordinarily proud to announce an historic deal with a very special player,” Royals CEO John Sherman said in a news release. “Like our fans, I’m thrilled that this ensures Bobby will compete in a Royals uniform for many years to come. Bobby makes us better, and I’m grateful for his commitment to our fans, our city, and our team.”
Witt was the No. 2 overall pick of the Royals in the 2019 MLB Draft. He went right from high school to the Royals farm system, where he quickly became the top prospect in the organization.
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He made his debut in 2022, finishing the season fourth in American League Rookie of the Year voting. He really came on in 2023 as he hit .276 with an OPS of .813. He had 30 home runs and led the major with 11 triples.
From the moment I was drafted in 2019, the entire Royals organization and fans have treated me and my family like their own,” Witt said in a news release. “This city and this team have felt like home since day one, and it’s an honor to have the opportunity to continue to represent all of KC. I am incredibly grateful to the Sherman family and the Royals front office for believing in me, and I promise to do everything in my power to help bring championship baseball back to Kansas City!”
Witt, 23, is the only player in MLB history to have a combined 50 home runs and 79 steals through his first two seasons.
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Witt’s deal is the biggest in franchise history.
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