We already knew that the Texas Rangers and Ian Kinsler had agreed to terms on a five-year contract extension with a 2018 option. We knew this because we are wizards, each and every one of us. On Wednesday, the extension was finalized, which means, details! We get sweet, sweet details! I don't know why we didn't already know about the details, too, since we're wizards, but life's a mystery.
#Rangers will pay Kinsler $13M in '13, $16M in 2014 and 2015, $14M in 2016 and $11M in 2017. Option for 2018 is $10M with a $5M buyout.— Jeff Wilson (@JeffWilson_FWST) April 11, 2012
What's interesting about this contract is that it's front-loaded, where other contracts, like Albert Pujols' or Joey Votto's, are back-loaded. You don't see a lot of front-loading these days. Maybe that's the Rangers trying to pay Kinsler each year according to his forecasted level of ability. Maybe it's something else. Writes Adam Morris at Lone Star Ball:
Also interesting is that Kinsler's contract is more front-loaded, something you rarely see in baseball contracts. Most contracts either pay out roughly the same amount per year, or accelerate significantly in the later years of the deal. I'm hard-pressed to think of the last time I saw a contract that declined so much in the later years of the deal.
Previously, the Rangers held a $10 million 2013 option that was certainly going to be exercised, barring catastrophe or sudden-onset incompetence. So while this is considered at least a five-year extension, it's more like at least a four-year extension, beginning after the 2013 season.