By the sounds of it, the Angels' days of renewing Mike Trout's contract at near the league mininum are soon to end. Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times reports that the Angels, while poised to renew Trout's contract at a deep discount for 2014, may soon begin talks on a multi-year contract extension that would make Trout one of baseball's highest-paid players. DiGiovanna writes:
The sides hope to reach a deal after the season starts. Any disappointment over a renewal should be erased by the prospect of what could be a record-setting contract likely to include a signing bonus far exceeding Trout's 2014 salary.
Needless to say, Trout should be able to command a hefty number, even before he's arbitration-eligible. The 22-year-old owns a career batting line of .314/.404/.544 (166 OPS+) across two seasons and change, and he's averaged 30 homers, 35 doubles and 41 stolen bases per 162 games played. Trout has finished runner-up to Miguel Cabrera in each of the last two AL MVP votes.
That kind of excellence from a player that young is going to cost the Angels if they want to buy out Trout's arbitration years and even a sliver of his free-agent seasons.
(Wink of CBS eye: Hardball Talk)