St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright.

(Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports)

More Details Reported of Wainwright's Incentive-Driven Contract

Next year, he'll have a base salary of $2 million with incentives for starts, relief appearances and games finished.

October 30, 2018 - 8:53 am
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ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - The St. Louis Cardinals will be paying Adam Wainwright on somewhat of a per-game salary in 2019. No matter if his role is in the bullpen or the starting rotation, the more they use him, the more they'll pay him.

The 37-year-old took a $17.5 million pay cut for his base salary, after making $19.5 million in 2018. It was a big surprise, even to the Cardinals president of baseball operations John Mozeliak, how quickly a deal came together to possibly keep Wainwright in St. Louis for the entirety of his big-league career. 

Next year, he'll have a base salary of $2 million with incentives for starts, relief appearances and games finished. The contract details were reported by Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic:

If Wainwright starts five games, he'll earn $0.5 million, then for every five games after that he'll be paid another $1 million. If he reaches 20 games, then he'll be paid $1.5 million and then if he reaches 25 and/or 30, he'll get $2 million for each.

So as an example, if we go back to Wainwright's last full season, when he started 33 games in 2014, he would have made $8 million on top of his base salary for starting at least 30 games. 

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It's a similar structure if he is used as a relief pitcher. If he reaches 35 appearances out of the bullpen, he'll make $0.5 million, then for each five-game increment after that he'll make another $0.5 million.

And if he's a closer, he'll make $0.5 million for both 25 and 30 games finished milestone. Then for every five games finished after that, he'll make $0.6 million.

Because the deal violated MLB's maximum-cut rule, Wainwright's contract was put on hold until the pitcher became a free agent, which was made official the day after the end of the World Series, Monday. 

For more details of the deal, check Baseball Prospectus and RotoWorld.