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Tampa Bay Rays: The Biggest Contracts the Past 12 Years

Joseph Koetters
Tampa Bay Rays v Detroit Tigers
Tampa Bay Rays v Detroit Tigers / Duane Burleson/GettyImages
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Kevin Kiermaier
Division Series - Tampa Bay Rays v Boston Red Sox - Game Four / Winslow Townson/GettyImages

Kevin Kiermaier 6yr/$53.5M (2017)

Kiermaier is entering the final year of his contract before the Rays can decided whether to buy him out or exercise his club option for 2023. Since the beginning of his contract, Kiermaier has been a very solid outfielder, statistically speaking. Over the past 5 seasons, Kiermaier has hit .243 with 230 runs and 182 RBIs. His weighted runs created + (wRC+) is a 93 which means that over that span, he is 7% below the league average in regards to creating runs.

However, the real value lies in his defense. Over his career with the Rays, he has won 2 Gold Gloves and has a defensive WAR of 17.4 which is higher than his offensive WAR of 15.1. After 2021, assuming no major injuries, I would expect the Rays to exercise his team option for 2022. Paying $13 million for a Gold Glove center fielder is a no brainer and surely teams are willing to spend more than that.

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