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UPDATE: Twins sign Denard Span to five-year contract

Mar 13, 2010, 12:27 PM EDT

Denard Span.jpgUpdate: Here’s the details: Span will make $750,000 in 2010, $1 million
in 2011, $3 million in 2012, $4.75 million in 2013 and $6.5 million in 2014. The contract includes a $9 million option for 2015 with a $500,000 buyout.

12:08 pm: Here it is. Christensen tweets that Span will earn $16.5 million over the five years while the Twins hold a $9 million option for 2015. Pretty nice deal for both sides.

11:38 am: Joe Christensen of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports that the Twins and outfielder Denard Span have agreed to a five-year contract. Terms aren’t yet available, but the new contract will cover the rest of Span’s team-controlled seasons.

Span, who turned 26 in February, batted .311/.392/.415 with eight homers, 10 triples, 68 RBI and 23 stolen bases last season and has quickly developed — with the help of LASIK surgery — into one of the game’s best leadoff hitters. The club felt comfortable enough with him as their everyday center fielder that they parted ways with Carlos Gomez to acquire shortstop J.J. Hardy this winter. While Span is more-developed with the bat, UZR (Ultimate Zone Rating) suggests that he can’t hold a candle to him defensively.

Looking at this from the Twins’ perspective, it’s nice to know Span is safely secured for the next five seasons, but I’d hope the contract contains some sort of team option for his first year of free agency or something.

  1. David - Mar 13, 2010 at 6:29 PM

    It’s amazing what the Twins are getting Span for compared to some other players on the team. Cuddyer will end up averaging over 8 million per year on his deal; Justin Morneau signed for 80 million over six years. Span is easily, easily more valuable than either of these guys. The situation with arbitration was different, I believe, with Morneau and Cuddyer, but still, Twins are getting a ton of bang for their buck with this deal.

  2. MVD - Mar 14, 2010 at 1:18 AM

    Nothing against Span. He is a great player and projects to be worth this much easily. But isnt he going to make more than Evan Longoria?

  3. MC - Mar 14, 2010 at 12:11 PM

    Longoria signed is deal days into his MLB career. Span had 2 remarkably consistent years under his belt which already places him as a well above avg bat in Center…
    I think given an entire year in CF, he’s going to play out as an avg defensive CF which makes him a well above average player for an avg annual just over 3 mil… controlled through his prime… even a bit of regression(unlikely) heading into what his prime is, he’s an average CF. Those aren’t cheap.
    If Revere or Hicks pushes Span’s out of CF, his OBP and above avg range in the corners plays well.

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