Seattle Mariners have signed shortstop J.P. Crawford to a new five-year contract worth approximately $51million.
Seattle are 33/1 to win the World Series and the Mariners had been looking to tie down Crawford for a while. The 27-year-old has emerged as one of the best defensive shortstops in baseball and a fixture in the leadoff spot for the Mariners.
Seattle narrowly missed the postseason last year and expect to contend in the American League West division for the foreseeable future.
Since acquiring him from the Philadelphia Phillies in 2019, where Crawford was a highly-touted prospect, Seattle now regard him as their shortstop of the future.
The Mariners bought out two years of free agency with the contract, which this year will pay $5million, which includes a $5million signing payment bonus.
With limited-long term deals on the books, the Mariners possess significant financial flexibility as they look to build on 2021.
Julio Rodriguez, one of their most touted prospects in the game, will be involved in the opening day and the additions of AL Cy Young Award winner Robbie Ray and slugger Jesse Winker, plus Logan Gilbert, have made the Mariners a healthy pick and a team capable of winning their first World Series.
Speaking to the official Seattle Mariners website, head of baseball operations, Jerry Dipoto said: "J.P. brings excellent defence at a critical position, in addition to solid on-base skills and a penchant for delivering the big moment.
"He's an incredibly competitive player who has become an integral part of our team, both on the field and in the clubhouse."