Nats lock up Ryan Zimmerman through at least 2019

3B Ryan Zimmerman, the 1st ever draft pick of the Washington Nationals, signed a contract extension that pretty much locks him in through 2019 with a team option for 2020. Terms of the extension are apparently 6 years, $100 million with a $24 million team option for the 2020 season. Zimmerman is one of five players in the majors signed through the 2019 season. He is now the second highest paid third baseman after Alex Rodriguez of the New York Yankees. RF Jayson Werth is still the Nats highest paid player. Also, Zimmerman has a 5 year, $10 million personal services contract that kicks in after retirement. Somebody noted that his no trade clause does not kick in until the new contract, though general manager Mike Rizzo assured him that a trade would not happen.

I wonder if Zimmerman and his agent, Brodie Van Wagenen have contributed to a new way of doing things for popular players. Zimmerman already had a contract for two more seasons, but they created an urgency to extend it. The Nats, only approaching respectability for the first time since returning in 2005, were in a tough public relations spot even though Zimmerman was coming off a year where he missed 60 games with injuries. Zimmerman is easily the most popular D.C. baseball player in the 21st century having won the Gold Glove and Silver Slugger award which he did during bad years. Could they wait to extend Zimmerman in the next offseason? Probably, but given the many PR gaffes the Nats have had, Zimmerman and Van Wagenen knew they had pretty strong bargaining. Well played, sirs.

By the way, Zimmerman leads the majors in game-ending home runs since 2006. That’s why I call him, Mr. Walkoff.


Ryan Zimmerman agrees to six-year, $100 million contract extension with the Washington Nationals
The Post
Forever the Face of the FranchiseCSN Washington
Nationals lock up Zimmerman for next eight seasonsThe Wash. Times
Zimmerman signs six-year extension with Natsnationals.com
Nationals lock up hot corner-stoneESPN
/1#.T0tr7vU2PIU”>Ryan Zimmerman, Nationals agree to new $100 million dealUSA Today
Teammates thrilled for Zimmerman – CSN Washington
JOHN HEYMAN: Early word: Nats paid too much for ZimmermanCBS Sports

Some video from the press conference courtesy of CSN Washington

Oh and Thomas Boswell is chatting at 11 — this should be fun.

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