The Nationals have reportedly reached an agreement with third baseman Ryan Zimmerman on a long-term contract extension. Adam Kilgore of The Washington Post and William Ladson of MLB.com both reported that the deal had been reached early Sunday morning.
As first reported by ESPN's Buster Olney, the new contract is a six-year deal running between 2014 and 2019, with a club option for a seventh season in 2020. CSN Washington's Nationals Insider Mark Zuckerman has confirmed that Zimmerman is guaranteed $126 million over the next eight years, while the team option in 2020 is for an additional $24 million. The deal also includes a full no-trade clause.
“Ryan Zimmerman is an exceptional talent and individual," Nationals owner Ted Lerner said in a statement. "He is a role model on the field, in the clubhouse and in the community. He has been the face of the Washington Nationals since baseball was returned to Washington. We are absolutely thrilled that Ryan will continue to help us build our team in a winning direction.”
Zimmerman, who was drafted by the Nationals with the fourth overall pick in the 2005 MLB amateur draft, had originally given the team and his agent, Brodie Van Wagenen, until Saturday morning to reach agreement on a deal that would keep him in Washington long-term. Late Saturday night, the Nationals and Van Wagenen both said that "significant progress" had been made on "many major parts" of an extension.
Zimmerman was signed with the Nationals through 2013, but had expressed his desire to test the free agent market after this season if a deal was not reached.
The 27-year-old Zimmerman has a career on-base percentage of .355 with 128 home runs and 498 RBIs in his seven years in D.C. He recorded an on-base percentage of .355 and a slugging percentage of .443 in 2011, hitting 12 homers and driving in 49 runs. The third baseman only played in 101 games in 2011 after undergoing surgery for a sports hernia.