By Sam Bush
Phillies rookie Scott Kingery had a great Sunday.
Especially for someone who has yet to play a regular season major league game.
The Phillies infielder made the roster for the Thursday opener and he agreed to a six-year deal, guaranteeing him $24 million.
The 23-year-old has been a standout this spring, hitting .392 over 51 at-bats. He was initially expected to begin the season in the minors, but his performance, and his new deal, make it likely he’ll play a significant role for the Phillies right now.
Kingery came into the spring ranked as the the team’s No. 3 prospect according to Baseball America. He’s considered a solid prospect in all areas, with each of his five tools rating above-average.
The amount of money in the deal is sure to set off alarm bells considering Kingery’s inexperience, but it’s actually not too crazy. The deal will cover all of Kingery’s arbitration years. As long as he’s not a complete bust, he would probably make close to $24 million — or potentially exceed it.
Here’s the breakdown of Kingery’s contract, according to Matt Gelb of the Athletic:
$1.5 signing bonus
2019: $1.25 mil
2020: $1.5 mil
2021: $4.0 mil
2022: $6.0 mil
2023: $8.0 mil
2024-26 options are $13, $14, $15 with $1 mil buyout.
The Kingery deal — like the deals for Carlos Santana and Jake Arrieta this winter — symbolizes that the Phillies’ competitive window is now open. The team foresees success in the near future, and wants to make sure Kingery is a big part of the young core that leads them there.