Congratulations to Rafael Devers, who has reportedly agreed to an 11-year, $331 million extension with the Red Sox, setting him up for the next decade and taking a lot of heat off the Red Sox brass, who sure have been hearing it all offseason.
And for all the love for trades and the free-agent market, we’ll confess we love a good extension. It keeps players with the fanbase that adores them, it provides security and certainty for the player and it allows the team to know, moving forward, exactly whom they can build around. Every team does them -- and every team should do more.
So, today, we take a look at an extension candidate for every team. Some of these are realistic and some are pushing it, but all these players are at a point in their careers where their current teams should probably make sure they stay around for a while. Now’s the time to make it happen.
Each player is listed along with what is currently scheduled to be his final season before reaching free agency.
AMERICAN LEAGUE EAST
Orioles: Adley Rutschman (2028)
Yeah, he just got here, but the Orioles already know just how valuable their phenomenal catcher is to everything they’re trying to do. It’s difficult to imagine the Orioles without Rutschman moving forward, so they’d benefit from making it official.
Rays: Tyler Glasnow (2024)
The Rays already extended him once, adding a year of club control (2024) at $25 million. But perhaps there is a longer deal to be had here. Given that Glasnow barely pitched in '22 after rehabbing from Tommy John surgery, there are enough question marks here that maybe there’s a way both the team and the player reduce some risk.
Royals: Bobby Witt Jr. (2027)
Kansas City is building everything around Witt Jr., who looks like a franchise centerpiece. The Royals don’t always get access to this sort of talent, and when they’ve had it in the past, they’ve often lost that player. Let’s not go through this again with Witt.
White Sox: Tim Anderson (2024)
The White Sox actually have a few options here -- Dylan Cease would be a wonderful South Sider for the next decade -- but what are the team’s alternatives if they lose Anderson? The 29-year-old’s $14 million club option for 2024 seems like a no-brainer to pick up, but Chicago will need to think beyond that.
Angels: Shohei Ohtani (2023)
I make it sound so easy: “Just extend Ohtani, would ya?”
Astros: Kyle Tucker (2025)
The rest of the baseball world still underrates Tucker -- I’ve often joked that his baseball card may well read The Underrated Kyle Tucker on the back at this point -- but the Astros sure don’t. They'd best not let him go anywhere.
Rangers: Josh Jung (2028)
The Rangers have been giving out contracts to external free agents left and right. Perhaps it’s time to make sure their top in-house prospect is secured for as long as possible as well.
NATIONAL LEAGUE EAST
Braves: Max Fried (2024)
He’s the only one left at this point who hasn’t been extended, right?
Marlins: Jazz Chisholm Jr. (2026)
If the Marlins are looking to show they are ready to build something for the long haul, extending their electric, terrific centerpiece should be an excellent place to start.
Mets: Pete Alonso (2024)
He’s actually the youngest person in this entire lineup. But do they want to extend him, or look for an even bigger-name free agent somewhere down the line?
Nationals: Keibert Ruiz (2027)
It feels a year or two early for the Nats to be extending anyone, but Ruiz, a potential premium bat at a premium position, might be where they turn first.
Phillies: Rhys Hoskins (2023)
He was a centerpiece for Philadelphia back when the club was struggling. Can the Phillies really just let Hoskins leave now that they’re finally getting good?
Cubs: Ian Happ (2023)
It has been long enough since the Cubs’ World Series win that Happ, who made his debut the next season, only has one more year left before free agency.
Pirates: Oneil Cruz (2028)
The talent is through the roof, but will he be able to corral it into regular, consistent productivity? It might be worth it for the Pirates to take that chance.
Reds: Jonathan India (2026)
Even after a down year, the fans love him. A franchise that has some certain credibility issues could do much worse than making sure India sticks around.
D-backs: Corbin Carroll (2028)
Carroll looks like a guy who might be the last person ever to wear No. 7 for this franchise.
Dodgers: Julio Urías (2023)
He's only 26, yet he’s entering the final year of his contract. Is this a guy who could be a Dodger for 20 years? If the Dodgers want to keep Urías, it will not be cheap.
Giants: Logan Webb (2025)
It’s pretty difficult to find an extension candidate on the Giants, which says something about the readiness of their farm system and the way they do business over there, at least so far. But Webb, with a 2.96 ERA over the past two seasons, makes as much sense as anyone.
Padres: Manny Machado (2023)
His contract runs through 2028, but he can opt out after this year, and very well may do so. Is there any way the Padres can hang onto their MVP?
Rockies: C.J. Cron (2023)
Cron has been a perfect fit with the Rockies. It feels like both sides should keep this going.