One more elite shortstop is off the board, and to the tune of the biggest contract ever handed out to a shortstop. Carlos Correa signed a crazy deal last offseason with Minnesota that paid him $35 million over 2022 before he opted out. Now he’s set to make more than 10 times that with his record-setting 13-year, $350 million contract from to play for the San Francisco Giants.
This is what Giants’ fans were hoping for this offseason, a big move to get an anchor for their lineup going forward. Just what does this deal mean for Correa and the Giants and their upcoming prospects? There’s still a top-of-the-market shortstop available in Dansby Swanson and what does this signing mean for his value?
What is Carlos Correa’s fantasy baseball value in 2023 and beyond?
Correa has proven to be a very consistent hitter in his eight years in the majors to this point. His career average of .279 has been matched exactly in three seasons so far and if we exclude the shortened 2020 season, he’s hit between 20 and 26 homers six-of-seven seasons. San Francisco needs that kind of bat to anchor their lineup going forward. The one year in Minnesota also proves that even when he’s based in a not-so-hitter-friendly park, he can still put up good offensive numbers. That’s also a benefit for fantasy players as he moves to the Bay Area for the next 13 years.
[Insert Baseball Savant spray chart]
If we take a look at the spray chart above, the homer total should remain about the same, though according to xHR on Baseball Savant he’d have had 24 homers last year playing San Fran. The advantage that he’ll have is the power alleys being so big including the triples alley in right center. We might see a tad bit of a drop in the run production categories given the lineup that’s around him currently but there should be help coming through the Giants’ system in the next year or two. The other main question with this signing is whether will Correa plays shortstop or will Brandon Crawford and right now the prevailing wisdom is Crawford moving to third base as he doesn’t really have the range for shortstop anymore. All told this move doesn’t really change his value for this year or the next couple of years for fantasy baseball and after that, we’ll have to reevaluate based on park performance and what the Giants are doing to surround him.
How does the Carlos Correa signing impact the San Francisco Giants?
While on the surface, paying a shortstop the fourth-highest guaranteed contract in baseball history and the highest for a shortstop seems like a lot, the AAV isn’t that bad. Over the course of the deal, the average salary he’ll command is $27 million a year. The Giants also don’t have the cash obligations to payout that others might with them paying off their stadium shortly. That means they won’t have to be quite as budget-conscious as other teams. So going forward, signing a deal like this for this long likely doesn’t hurt their flexibility that much. The thing it does do is make Marco Luciano an interesting player to watch as he was expected to be the shortstop in waiting down in the minors and now he’ll likely have to change positions or convince the Giants to move Correa to third base after Brandon Crawford’s deal is done. The hope for San Fran is that having a player like Correa locked in for the rest of his career will mean that more prized free agents will want to join him in the coming years much like San Diego has done with Manny Machado and the Phillies have with Bryce Harper and now Trea Turner.
How does the Carlos Correa signing impact the rest of the MLB free-agent market?
The biggest winner in all of this is Dansby Swanson. He’s now the best shortstop left on the market after Trea Turner, Correa, and Xander Bogaerts have all signed. He’s likely to be in for a good payday as a team gets desperate to fill a hole in the middle of their infield. The rest of the market will take time to develop for the remaining key assets on the open market, much like we saw with Kris Bryant last year being a late signee by the Rockies.
Related MLB Links:
- 2023 MLB Free Agent Tracker
- 2023 Top-350 MLB Fantasy Baseball Dynasty Rankings
- MLB Breaking News: Masataka Yoshida Signs With Boston Red Sox in 2023 MLB Free Agency
- MLB Breaking News: Xander Bogaerts Signs With San Diego Padres in 2023 MLB Free Agency