Ronald Acuña Jr. to receive $100 million over eight years with Braves

Ronald Acuña Jr. to receive $100 million over eight years with Braves

The Atlanta Braves have agreed in principle to the second-largest deal in franchise history with star outfielder Ronald Acuña Jr.

Acuña has agreed to a seven-year, $94.44 million extension that includes two club options for $17 million a year. Acuña, who still will be paid $560,000 this season, will be under the Braves control, paying him a total of $100 million over eight years. The contract gives the Braves’ financial control over him through 2030 if the club options are exercised.

The deal is expected to be officially announced Wednesday, a person with direct knowledge of the negotiations told USA TODAY Sports. The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the deal hasn’t been finalized, pending Acuña’s physical.

The sophomore phenom, who turned 21 in December, had a historic rookie year. He was a near-unanimous winner for the National League Rookie of the Year, receiving 27 of 30 first-place votes to beat out Juan Soto of the Washington Nationals.

Expectations were high on the young, emerging star, who helped lead the Braves to an unexpected playoff run last season. He led all rookies with 26 homers and hit .293 with a .917 on-base-plus-slugging percentage. 

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Acuña also became one of five players in major league history to reach 26 home runs in a season before his 21st birthday and is the 10th player in history to have 25 home runs and 15 steals in his rookie season and the first since Mike Trout in 2012.

Acuña follows on the heels of several players signing extensions this spring before reaching free agency. Shortstop Xander Boergarts received a $120 million extension with the Boston Red Sox on Monday. Others include Chicago White Sox outfielder Eloy Jimenez, Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Blake Snell, Houston Astros third baseman Alex Bregman and New York Mets pitcher Jacob deGrom. 

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