The Detroit Tigers have offered outfielder Juan Gonzalez the biggest contract in baseball history, $140 million over eight years, The Detroit News reported today.
The deal would beat the $105 million deal Kevin Brown got from the Los Angeles Dodgers before last season. Brown averages $15 million a season, while the Tigers would pay Gonzalez $17.5 million a year.
The Tigers were hoping to make a contract announcement today.
"That's been our hope for a while," general manager Randy Smith told the newspaper. "But I'm not going to confirm or deny the offer. We don't negotiate in public."
Even if the contract doesn't turn out to be the largest in baseball, Smith did say the Tigers plan to make the two-time American League MVP their best paid player ever.
"We didn't get into this not to make him a good offer," Smith said. "He's one of the best players in the game. We've known what it might take."
The Tigers acquired the 30-year-old Gonzalez from Texas in a nine-player deal in November.
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