MLB: TB Rays, RHP Chris Archer Agree to 6-Year Extension

The Tampa Bay Rays agreed to sign right-handed pitcher Chris Archer to a six-year contract extension worth as much as $43.75 million with $25.5 million in guaranteed money on April 2.

Apr 2 2014, 8:25pm CDT | by

MLB: TB Rays, RHP Chris Archer Agree to 6-Year Extension
Photo Credit: Getty Images

The Tampa Bay Rays signed right-handed pitcher Chris Archer to a six-year contract extension on April 2. 

According to Bill Chastain of the Rays' official website, Archer's new deal runs through 2019 with club options for the next two seasons. Archer is guaranteed $25.5 million during those six years and could earn as much as $43.75 million: 

"The Rays and right-hander Chris Archer agreed Wednesday on a six-year contract that will run through 2019, with club options for '20 and '21. 

"The Rays said the deal guarantees Archer $25.5 million over the six years, and it has the potential to reach a maximum value of $43.75 million.

"In addition, he wanted to get his parents free of debt and also rid himself of money worries when he's on the mound. Those reasons, coupled with the threat of injury, made the extension a no-brainer for Archer."

Archer told Chastain he promises to give it his all on the mound for Tampa Bay. 

"There are few things in life that are guaranteed, and the Rays have guaranteed me six years for the amount that we all know, and, in turn, I'm going to guarantee to give them everything I can on and off the field.

"I don't know if all the injuries -- the head injuries, the concussions, the elbow injuries, some shoulder injuries -- that have happened of late, I don't know if they've happened as a sign for me, but I took them as a sign for me, a sign of what's unknown.

"I sat down with my financial advisor. With this contract, I'm finally secure multiple times over again, through many generations. For me, that's all I ever wanted out of this game -- to be personally secure and have my family members secure as well." 

Archer also told Marc Topkin of The Tampa Bay Times he's overwhelmed with the faith the Rays have in him. 

"This is the first team I've ever really played for that really believed in me. The willingness from the Rays to offer such a contract for somebody with under a year of service time is remarkable, and it was something I definitely couldn't say no to." 

Topkin notes Tampa Bay executive vice president Andrew Friedman broached the topic of an extension with Archer during spring training with discussions concluding on March 29. Friedman told Topkin the team seeks several qualities among its players who are being considered for a new contract, with talent and character as part of the checklist.

Friedman also made this clear to ESPN's Jerry Crasnick. 

"When we make a long-term commitment to a player, we look not only at his talent but also his intangibles. There's no question Chris has the talent to develop into a top-of-the-rotation starter, and he has the drive and character to realize that potential. 

"We are very pleased to solifify his place as one of our core players for years to come." 

Archer's new deal is a testament to how far he's come -- he "was cut from his 7th grade baseball team, and was told he would never play college baseball," according to Chris Field of Tampa Bay's Fox 13 Sports. 

The Rays right-hander told Field anything is possible if one gives it all he's got.

"I think the way I would like to describe it is, for any kid out there who has been told that he can't do something, I'm living proof that you can. Whatever it is -- whether it's sports, whether it's school, whether you want to be a general manager of a baseball team or a professor, whatever it is -- you're fully capable of doing it if you put in 100 purpose and intent. You'll be rewarded."

The 25-year-old Archer wound up in Tampa Bay as part of an eight-player trade that had Matt Garza becoming a Chicago Cub. He posted a 9-7 win-loss record with a 3.22 ERA and 101 strikeouts while starting in 23 games in the 2013 MLB season, per Crasnick. 

 
 
 


Poch de la Rosa follows all major U.S. sports: NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL and the NCAA. His favorite teams are the Colts, Braves, Pacers, Sharks and Irish, respectively.

 

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