On Wednesday, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. launched three home runs — his second career three-HR game and first career four-hit game — in the Blue Jays’ 6-4 win over the Yankees.
At +380, Vlad Jr. is the early favorite to win AL MVP. Should he stay this hot and manage to win the award, his value will spike even more — putting pressure on Toronto to pony up for a massive long-term contract.
The longer Toronto waits, the harder it could become to commit the time or cash to him — especially if the terms are comparable to fellow 23-year-old superstar Fernando Tatis Jr. (14 YRS/$340M).
- Guerrero Jr. signed a one-year, $7.9M deal to avoid arbitration — making him the 163rd-highest-paid player in 2022.
- Last season, the Blue Jays handed out the largest contract in franchise history to George Springer (6 YRS, $150M), which is only 25th by total value and 16th by AAV ($29.7M).
- Complicating matters further for Toronto ($169.5M payroll, 11th in MLB) is teammate Bo Bichette — who’s playing on a pre-arbitration $723,550 salary and also in line for a payday.
After just 143 games, San Diego signed Tatis to the third-largest deal in MLB history, but the 14-year pact is just 27th in AAV ($24.3M) — an incredibly team-friendly deal if his production doesn’t fall off a cliff.
Guerrero still has three years of arbitration remaining and won’t be a free agent until 2026. The question is whether Toronto will lock him in before then.