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Report: Miguel Cabrera, Tigers agree to long-term contract extension

Mike Oz
Big League Stew
MLB: Spring Training-Detroit Tigers at Philadelphia Phillies
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All smiles. Miguel Cabrera is about to be an ever richer man after his new contract with the Tigers. (USA Today)

We don't know the exact terms yet, but various media reports suggest that Cabrera will be making nearly $300 million over the next 10 years. Jon Morosi of Fox Sports reports Cabrera's extension is worth $248 million over eight years. Add that to $44 million that Cabrera is due in 2014 and 2015 under his current contract and that's $292 million over 10 years. That matches what ESPN's Jerry Crasnick reported, a 10-year deal "just under $300 million." The deal will keep Cabrera with the Tigers through 2023.

Cabrera's extension on its own doesn't break any records immediately. Once Cabrera's contract hits its extension years, it would top Clayton Kershaw's recent deal with the Dodgers for highest annual value, so long as nobody else signs a bigger deal soon. The AAV on Kershaw's deal is $30.7 million. The extension portion of Miggy's contract has an $31 million AAV.

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(USA Today)

A $248 million contract would the third richest of all time, following Alex Rodriguez's $252 million and $275 million deals. Robinson Cano and Albert Pujols both signed contracts worth $240 million in recent years. From a simple dollars standpoint, Cabrera's reported $292 million payday over 10 years (if they were one single contract) would surpass both of A-Rod's 10-year deals.

Since joining the Tigers in 2006, Cabrera has hit .327/.407/.588 with 227 homers and 737 RBIs, establishing himself as the most dangerous hitter in MLB. He's been durable too, averaging 157 games per season with the Tigers.

Still, dishing out $30 million to Cabrera when he's 38, 39 and 40 years old is quite the gamble. Those deals never end well, and there's little reason to believe this one will, no matter how good Cabrera is right now. But it's the earlier years the Tigers are banking on.

Securing Cabrera long term was only one half of Detroit's offseason to-do list, the other half is still incomplete. From Heyman's piece at CBS Sports:

The Tigers traded Prince Fielder in the winter partly to free up money to sign Cabrera and Cy Young-winner Max Scherzer to longterm deals. The Tigers recently announced they were unable to extend Scherzer. They offered the right-hander $144 million over six years.

While we're left to wonder what will happen with Scherzer, we also have time to estimate baseball's next big payday. The Los Angeles Angels and their young star Mike Trout are said to be working on a monster contract extension that many experts believe could shatter records because of Trout's youth. He's just 22 and a much less risky investment over 10 years.

Could he finally top A-Rod's contract? And the $300-million mark? Time will tell. For now, Miguel Cabrera has a lot of money to count.

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Mike Oz is an editor for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at mikeozstew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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