The number has landed, and it is high.
Free agent Josh Hamilton is reportedly looking for a seven-year deal worth about $175 million overall — or $25 million a season, according to Baseball Prospectus writer John Perrotto.
— John Perrotto (@jperrotto) November 2, 2012
Hamilton is the biggest name in this year’s free agent class, although he carries off-field concerns due to struggles with substance abuse in the past. Still, he’s racked up 161 home runs in his six years in Major League Baseball, including 43 last season, and has an ability to hit for average and drive in runs — all rare, must-have qualities for teams that need a slugger.
Asking for $25 million could be a bit of a stretch, though, considering the usual big spenders have been shy about pursuing Hamilton. The Yankees have no need for another slugger, the Red Sox aren’t likely to bring Hamilton into the Boston environment and clubs like the Dodgers and Marlins have closed their pocketbooks for now.
Hamilton, 31, who just wrapped up his fifth year with Texas, is also thinking big with a seven-year deal, which would put him in Albert Pujols territory in terms of getting premier money as he plays into his late 30s.