Santana traded. Whats the big deal?
Twins pitching ace Johan Santana finalized a deal with the New York Mets on Friday reports the New York Times. The deal makes Santana the highest paid pitcher in league history as well as the second highest annual salary in all of baseball behind Yankees superstar Alex Rodriguez.
The deal sends Santana to the Mets in exchange for one centerfielder and three pitchers. The Twins get an up-and-coming centerfielder who will most likely replace the spot vacated by Torii Hunter, and three young unproven pitching prospects. The Mets get a new headliner to go along with a already strong pitching rotation as well as keeping the core of the team intact.
Johan Santana gets something too, $150 million and an extended six year contract. Santana also will now pitch in the lights of New York City and get a chance to steal some of the spotlight from city rival Yankees.
With the finalizing of this deal major league baseball and many of its players got something too, a glimpse of the future of free agent paydays. Santana's contract is nearly $25 million more than the previous blockbuster deal signed by Barry Zito of the Giants last offseason and over $3 million more annually than the Cubs Carlos Zambrano.
Jayson Stark of ESPN.com says "it was definitely a great day in the life of C.C. Sabathia, too." Sabathia is the reigning Cy Young winner and is set to be a free agent after this season which means he could be seeing lots of dollar signs in his future.
In the end you have two teams going in different directions and a salary increase that will likely set the bar for star pitching contracts in the coming years.