There were two players that fans wondered if the Mets would look to lock up early. And the club did just that with Jeff McNeil, signing him to a 4/$50 million deal with a club option for a fifth season at $13.75 million. It seems like an incredible deal for a player coming off a 5.9 fWAR season.

McNeil had two things working against him, as injuries forced him to come up later than most guys who make an impact at the MLB level. The other was a touch of uncertainty, given his 2021 results. Still, Mets fans should be elated – even with Steve Cohen’s bottomless pockets – to get a player of this caliber locked up at this contract.

McNeil came up midway through the 2018 season and produced results right away. If we count his 2018 and 2020 campaigns as one season, he combined for 457 PA in the majors in those two years, McNeil has been really good for three seasons along with a clunker in 2021.

Some wonder if McNeil will be hurt by the elimination of the shift, as he hunted open spots on the diamond to hit balls into open spaces. My belief is that it will benefit McNeil because instead of looking to poke the ball the other way, now he can focus on driving balls into the outfield gaps for extra-base hits.

With McNeil extended, everyone will focus on getting a long-term deal with Pete Alonso.

8 comments on “Mets ink Jeff McNeil to a team-favorable extension

  • BoomBoom

    Great signing. Almost the entire off-season wish list has been fulfilled. Sign Pete to 10 yrs /220 million and call it a day.

    • Steve_S.

      My guess would be 10 years/$260m, with him beating Olson’s deal.

  • MikeW

    Really good move.

  • Metsense

    Signing McNeil, a two time all star and batting champion for 4/$50m with a another year club option at $13.5 is a good team deal.
    From McNeil’s perspective it was a good deal for him. He is going to quadruple his 2022 salary and doesn’t have to worry about a down year or an injury when he would have been a 33-year-old free agent in 2025. So far in his career he has only earned $4.5m. $50-63.5m is alot of security for a player in his financial position and age.

    • TexasGusCC

      Very well written analysis Metsense. In his minor league days, McNeil missed much time to injuries. Hence, as long as he has no regrets, this security is something that is hard to pass up.

      I also agree with Brian that he can now focus on driving the ball: Daniel Murphy 2.0.

  • Bob P

    I love this deal. Now let’s lock up Pete.

  • T.J.

    Could it be, a page from the Braves playbook?

    What next…playing some kids over fading vets?

    I don’t know how much of this I can handle in such a short span of time. The only thing left to complain about may be the extremely high ticket prices on the secondary market.

  • Nym6986

    The contract seems very team friendly in this world of 9 figure deals. He will benefit from the decreased shift and will still poke the ball the opposite way based on the situation. Now on to Pete and locking him up with a fair contract that will certainly dwarf this deal and rightfully should. A little concerned if Marte is not ready to start the season, but we already know that McNeil is comfortable filling in in the OF. Just another added bonus we get inking him to a long long term deal that’s really not that long. And yes, I too would rather see some kids get their shot over the Ruff’s and Pham’s of the world.

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