Kansas City Royals’ rising star, Bobby Witt Jr., has inked a monumental 11-year, $288.8 million contract extension with the team, solidifying his place at the heart of the Royals’ future plans. The deal, which includes opt-out clauses and a potential club option, reflects the team’s commitment to building around Witt as they aim to revitalize both their roster and potentially construct a new stadium.
Witt, only 23 and entering his third league season, showcased his prowess last year, hitting .276 with 30 home runs, 49 stolen bases, and Gold Glove-caliber defense. His outstanding performance led the Royals to offer him a deal that places him among the highest-paid players in baseball history.
The contract not only highlights Witt's exceptional skills on the field but also underscores the Kansas City Royals' dedication to bringing relevance back to the franchise.
The timing of the extension aligns with a critical period for Kansas City sports, as the Kansa City Chiefs gear up for the Super Bowl, adding to the excitement surrounding the city's sports scene.
"This city and this team have felt like home since day one, and it’s an honor to have the opportunity to continue to represent all of KC." - Bobby Witt Jr.
The Royals' aggressive moves in free agency, coupled with Witt's extension, demonstrate owner John Sherman's sincere commitment to rebuilding the team and potentially constructing a new downtown stadium. The agreement with Witt, a shortstop with a combination of power, speed, and high character, marks a pivotal moment for the Royals, who have struggled in recent years.
Bobby Witt Jr. has signed one of the highest pre-arbitration contracts in MLB history
The extension also serves as a strategic move for the Royals, ensuring Witt's long-term commitment to the team while avoiding the uncertainties of arbitration and potential free agency in the future. Witt's deal ranks second in guarantees for a pre-arbitration player, trailing only Fernando Tatis Jr.'s massive 14-year, $340 million contract.
For Witt, who expressed a desire to remain with the Royals, the contract is not just a financial commitment but an investment in trust and a belief in the team's vision. As the Royals look to secure their future with Witt as a cornerstone, this unprecedented contract underscores the significance of the young shortstop in the team's plans for sustained success.
"I want to be here for a long time." - Expressed Witt Jr. before the signing of his long-term contract.
In Witt's own words, "This city and this team have felt like home since day one, and it’s an honor to have the opportunity to continue to represent all of KC."
The Royals and their fans can now look forward to a promising era with Bobby Witt Jr. leading the charge.