13 Biggest MLB Contract of Currently Active Players

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Every year the craze for baseball gets bigger, and then the biggest MLB contract emerges. Here, we bring you the 13 most extensive MLB contracts that make headlines every year. 

Undoubtedly, baseball is one of the highest-paying sports in the world. In 2003, the famous baseball player Alex Rodriquez made it to the Forbes list of Richest Players.

MLB Players on the Field
MLB Players on the mound.

The starting pitchers and first baseman usually earn the most money in baseball out of other positions. Starting pitchers have a salary of $22 million or more per year approximately. 

The MLB contracts are one of the eye-catching news that makes headlines each year. With the growing popularity and viewership increment yearly, the contracts are getting bigger and better. 

Let’s find out the top MLB contracts that caught people’s eyes. 

13 Biggest MLB Contract

Before we dive into the contract information, first take a look at an overview of the list of the biggest MLB contracts. The information has been gathered from MLB

Ranking Name of the players Contract worth 
1. Mookie Betts $365 million
2.  Mike Trout $360 million
3. Francisco Lindor $341 million
4. Fernando Tatis Jr. $340 million
5. Bryce Harper $330 million
6. Giancarlo Stanton $325 million
7. Gerrit Cole $324 million
8. Manny Machado $300 million
9. Miguel Cabrera $248 million
10. Nolan Arenado $234 million
11. Joey Votto $225 million
12. Clayton Kershaw $215 million
13. Derek Jeter $189 million

1. Mookie Betts 

  • Team: Los Angeles Dodgers
  • Position: Right fielder
  • Contract worth: $365 million 

Markus Lynn Mookie” Betts is a professional baseball right fielder playing for the Los Angeles Dodgers. Betts was drafted in 2011 by the Red Sox but didn’t make his debut until 2014. 

Betts played for the Boston Red Sox from 2014 to 2019 and then signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2020. In July, the Dodgers signed a $365 million contract with Betts and a bonus worth $65 million

Biggest MLB Contract Holder Mookie Bretts
Biggest MLB Contract Holder Mookie Bretts

Since his debut, he has had a remarkable MLB career. He has received several awards, such as AL MVP, AL batting champion, and two times World Series champion, to name a few.

Furthermore, his MLB statistics include a .298 batting average, 1,144 hits, 176 homers, 563 runs batted in, and 146 stolen bases. 

2. Mike Trout

  • Team: Los Angeles Angels
  • Position: Center fielder
  • Contract worth: $360 million 

Michael Nelson Trout is an MLB center fielder for the Los Angeles Angels. Mike was drafted by the Los Angeles Angels in the 2009 MLB Draft and later made his debut in 2012. 

Trout signed a contract extension with the Angeles in 2019, which runs until 2030. the contract is worth a whopping $360 million. However, with the remainder of $66.5 million from his previous contract, this makes a total of $427 million approximately. 

He is a nine times All-star winner, three times AL MVP winner, 2012 AL Rookie of the year, 2012 AL RBI leader, and 2012 AL stone base leader. 

With his enthusiastic to-do attitude, Trout has had a remarkable MLB career. In the MLB 2021 season, he recorded 310 home runs and 1419 hits with a batting average of .305. 

3. Francisco Lindor

  • Team: New York Mets
  • Position: Shortstop
  • Contract worth: $341 million

Francisco Miguel Lindor, also lovingly called Paquito, is a Puerto Rican MLB player. Since his debut in 2017, Lindor has played with Cleveland Indians from 2015 to 2020 and is currently with New York Mets

In 2021, the Mets and Francisco agreed on a contract worth $341 million for ten years. The contract runs until 2031, and the contract will take effect from 2022. 

Francisco Lindor
Francisco Lindor

Lindor is one of the remarkable baseball players with a four times All-Star, two times Gold Glove, and two times Slugger awards in his career. Moreover, he also played baseball internationally for his home country’s national team in 2017. 

In the 2021 MLB season, Lindor scored 158 homers with a batting average of .278 and 474 runs. 

4. Fernando Tatis Jr.

  • Team: San Diego Padres
  • Position: Shortstop and Outfielder
  • Contract worth: $340 million 

Fernando Gabriel Tatis Medina Jr. is a professional baseball player from the Dominican Republic. Fernando made his Major League Baseball debut in 2019 with the San Diego Padres. 

Before MLB, Tatis played minor leagues with teams like San Antonio Missions and Fort Wayne TinCaps Class A Midwest League. He was considered the top prospect for MLB even before his debut. 

Then in 2019, he officially signed with the Padres. Finally, in 2021, Tatis agreed to a 14-year contract with the Padres worth $340 million. It was considered the 4th highest worth contract in the history of MLB. 

In regards to his MLB stats until now, he has received an All-star and NL Home run leader award, to name a few. 

5. Bryce Harper

  • Team: Philadelphia Phillies
  • Position: Right fielder
  • Contract worth: $330 million

Bryce Aron Max Harper is a right fielder for the Philadelphia Phillies. Harper made his MLB debut in 2012 with the Washington Nationals. 

Bryce is a six times All-star winner with NL MVP and NL Rookie of the year under his name. The 31-year-old player was the youngest player in MLB history, at the age of 23, to ever win an NL MVP award. 

The Phillies didn’t back down to offer him a $330 million contract with the back-to-back records and stats. Harper agreed to the contract in 2018-19, which runs through 2031.

In the 2021 season, he scored 267 home runs, 1,273 hits, 752 runs batted in, and a.279 batting average.

6. Giancarlo Stanton

  • Team: New York Yankees
  • Position: Outfielder
  • Contract worth: $325 million 

The next player with the biggest MLB contract ever is Giancarlo Cruz Michael Stanton. Giancarlo is a designated hitter and outfielder for the New York Yankees. He first debuted in the MLB with the Florida Marlins. 

When Stanton signed a contract worth $325 million with the Marlins in 2014, this contract was rarely seen.

Giancarlo Stanton
Giancarlo Stanton holds up the T-Mobile #HRDerby trophy.

He played most of the deal with the Marlins before being traded with the Yankees.

The contract included that Stanton could willingly drop out of the contract after he turned 30 years old. 

7. Gerrit Cole 

  • Team: New York Yankees
  • Position: Starting Pitcher
  • Contract worth: $324 million

Gerrit Kermit Cole is a professional baseball starting pitcher who plays for the New York Yankees currently. However, he made his MLB debut in 2013 with the Pittsburgh Pirates. 

Cole has received several awards from four times All-star, AL ERA Leader in 2019, AL wins leader in 2021, and MLB strikeout leader in 2019

After transferring from the Pirates to the Houston Astros, Cole played for the Astros for a year. Afterward, he transferred to the New York Yankees in 2020. 

In 2019, the Yankees and Cole signed a contract worth $324 million making this the biggest MLB contract ever for a baseball pitcher. 

8. Manny Machado

  • Team: San Diego Padres
  • Position: Third baseman/Shortstop
  • Contract worth: $300 million

Manny Arturo Machado is an MLB player who plays for the San Diego Padres currently. Previously, he also played for the Baltimore Orioles and Los Angeles Dodgers.

With a five times All-star winner and two times Gold Glove awards under his wing, the Padres signed a $300 million contract with Manny. He was traded with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2018 for a year. 

Manny and the Dodgers signed the $300 million contract in 2018, which runs through 2028. 

In the 2021 season, Manny scored 251 home runs, 751 runs batted in, and a .280 batting average.

9. Miguel Cabrera

  • Team: Detroit Tigers
  • Position: Third baseman
  • Contract worth: $248 million 

Jose Miguel Cabrera Torres is an MLB player who plays for the Detroit Tigers currently.

Cabrera signed with the Detroit Tigers an eight-year contract worth $153 million approximately in 2008 through a trade-in. The contract also included $44 million from Cabrera’s previous deal with Dave Dombrowski, the general manager. 

Cabrera earned $12 million approximately in 2008 and a $20 million annual salary until 2015.

In the 2021 season, he scored 502 runs, 2,987 hits. In addition, 1,804 runs batted in with a .310 batting average.

10. Nolan Arenado

  • Team: St. Louis Cardinals
  • Position: Third baseman
  • Contract worth: $234 million

Nolan James Arenado is a professional baseball player of the St. Louis Cardinals. However, he made his MLB debut in 2013 with the Colorado Rockies.

Arenado already had a one-year deal worth $26 million with the Rockies. Later, the contract was extended, which gave Arenado a total of $260 million. The contract was signed in 2019 and continues until 2026. 

However, the Rockies traded Arenado with the Cardinals before the 2021 season. 

11. Joey Votto

  • Team: Cincinnati Reds
  • Position: First baseman
  • Contract worth: $225 million

Joseph Daniel Votto made his MLB debut in 2007 with the Cincinnati Reds. He is a six times All-star winner, an NL MVP, NL Hank Aaron, and Gold Glove award. 

After he was decided the NL MVP in 2010, he became one of the sought-after players. The Reds instantly signed with Votto a three-year contract worth $225 million.

Joey Votto
Joey Votto

Moreover, the contract runs from 2012 through 2023.  In MLB 2021 Season, he displayed remarkable stats with 2.027 hits, 331 homers, and a .302 batting average. 

12. Clayton Kershaw

  • Team: Los Angeles Dodgers
  • Position: Pitcher
  • Contract worth: $215 million

Clayton Edward Kershaw made his MLB debut in 2008 with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Kershaw is a professional baseball pitcher who has remarkable MLB records. 

In 2021, he recorded a 185-75 win-loss record with 2,670 strikeouts and 2.49 ERA. In 2020, he won the World Series Champion and ALL-MLB Second Team

Furthermore, with his exceptional performance since his debut, it was a no-brainer that the Dodgers wouldn’t sign Kershaw. However, in 2014, the Dodgers and Kershaw agreed to a contract worth $215 million until 2018. 

Additionally, in 2018 the Dodgers and Kershaw signed a contract extension worth $93 million. 

13. Derek Jeter

  • Team: New York Yankees
  • Position: Shortstop
  • Contract worth: $189 million

Last but not least, the 13th player on our list of the biggest MLB contract ever is Derek Sanderson Jeter. Derek is a professional baseball player who made his MLB debut in 1995 with the New York Yankees. Also, he played his final MLB game under the Yankees as well. 

In 2001, Derek signed a ten-year contract with the Yankees worth $189 million. It was the 3rd highest average annual contract in baseball at that time. 

Derek Jeter
Derek Jeter

Finally, in 2014, he re-signed a contract with the Yankees for a year worth $12 million for his final season. 

Derek left a legacy in the baseball world. He is a fourteen times All-Star with five times World Series Champion and World Series MVP under his name. As of now, he is retired as a businessman and manages several business enterprises. 


Major League Baseball is an ever-growing game with millions and billions of dollars transactions. As the popularity of baseball grows, the popularity and the salary of the players grow simultaneously. 

The players mentioned in the list above have held the records for the most significant MLB contracts. But, for how long?

With the rise of new players each year, breaking the record doesn’t seem that tough. 

Sanjib Sah
Sanjib Sah
Sanjib Sah is an engineer and content writer passionate about sports and athletics. With a background in engineering and a love for all things active, Sanjib brings a unique perspective to the world of sports writing. Whether he is covering the latest trends in sports technology or sharing tips on improving your game, Sanjib's words are always rooted in a deep appreciation for players' hard work and dedication everywhere. In his free time, you can find him hitting the courts or hitting the trails, always looking for new ways to challenge himself and improve his skills.

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