San Francisco Giants general manager Brian Sabean appears to be playing hardball.
Early Sunday morning, reports leaked suggesting that Sabean had all but put contract extensions with third baseman Pablo Sandoval on the back burner – hinting that no deal would be completed before the regular season began.
It was a little odd given the Giants have historically locked up their star players before the season’s first pitch, but it sounds as if the two sides are running into financial issues, thus the stalemate.
According to Andrew Baggarly, Sandoval recently turned down a three-year, $40 million dollar offer from the Giants and is looking for a Hunter Pence type-contract, around five years and $90 million dollars.
"The Giants on Friday made a three-year offer in the $40 million range, according to Gustavo Vasquez of SPS Sports Group. The offer was rejected out of hand by Sandoval’s camp, which hoped to use Hunter Pence’s five-year, $90 million deal as a starting point in negotiations."
More than just the annual jump in salary from $13.3 million to $18 million is the commitment of five years.
Sandoval has struggled with weight and injury (despite being a fan favorite) during his tenure with the Giants and they understandably likely don’t want to commit for five seasons until Sandoval shows his worth.