Shortstop Carlos Correa could surpass $300 million, but he is not expected to approach $350 million.
Who could be baseball’s next $400 million man?
There aren’t too many candidates, but here are three of them.
3. Bobby Witt Jr.
Bobby Witt Jr. could be a $400-million man, but a series of things would need to happen for that to materialize.
Who is he, you might ask?
He is one of the best prospects in the game.
Witt plays for the Kansas City Royals organization, who clearly didn’t have any incentive to bring him up in 2021 despite his evident readiness.
Witt passed the Double-A and Triple-A tests with honors.
In 61 Double-A games, he slashed .295/.369/.570 with 16 homers and 14 stolen bases.
Then he was promoted to Triple-A and was even better: in 61 games, he hit .285/.352/.581 with 17 dingers and 15 thefts.
Overall, he finished the 2021 minor league campaign with 33 home runs and 29 stolen bases.
For him to have a shot at a $400 million contract, he would need to be up in 2022 and dominate for at least a couple of seasons.
Only then, with the arbitration years quickly approaching, he could have leverage.
Otherwise, he has it all: he is a star offensively and defensively at a premium position, he is fast, has charisma, and leadership.
2. Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
Vladimir Guerrero Jr. unlocked a level of performance in 2021 that invites us to wonder if he can get a $400 million contract someday.
His .311/.401/.601 line, 48 home runs, 123 runs, and 11 RBI made him the greatest offensive performer in the game.
That was his ceiling as a prospect: he has reached it, and then some.
The Toronto Blue Jays will pay him around $8 million in the 2022 campaign.
Once arbitration gets deeper, he will get very, very expensive.
If the Blue Jays wait too long to extend their man, he will get pricier by the minute.
If they reach a deal near his free agency, it could be near or over $400 million, and the same goes if they let him reach free agency because he will be 26.
Just was on Vladdys insta story again and saw this. It translates to "Worth $400 million. Soto and Vladdy, says Tatis." May be nothing, it also may be everything. But for #BlueJays fans it's exciting knowing Vladdy is at least entertaining the idea of signing in Toronto long term pic.twitter.com/yNdmBMxNYA
— #1 Jays Fan (@BigJays) December 17, 2021
1. Juan Soto
Barring an unexpected development, MLB’s next $400-million man will be Washington Nationals outfielder Juan Soto.
They know he won’t be cheap.
Soto is a perennial MVP candidate at the tender age of 23.
He is fresh off putting a 6.6 WAR season in 2021.
WAR means Wins Above Replacement.
This past season, Soto finished second in the MVP voting with a.313/.465/.534 line, 29 homers, 111 runs, 95 RBI, and nine stolen bases.
He will enter his second season of arbitration eligibility, and will make around $15 million in 2022.
He has two more arbitration seasons, and those could be incredibly expensive.
It’s time for an extension, and with several accolades (All-MLB teams, Silver Sluggers, top-three MVP finishes), he could even approach $500 million.
Soto deserves $500 million
— . (@okcfanethan) April 11, 2021
He is young, can field, can run, and is perhaps the best pure hitter in MLB.
He will get paid handsomely.