Goldschmidt deal is official, 'perennial All-Star' makes St. Louis home

Tom Ackerman
March 22, 2019 - 2:42 pm

Paul Goldschmidt chats with his three-year-old son, Jacob, after signing a five-year extension with the Cardinals through 2024. (Tom Ackerman/KMOX)

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JUPITER, Fla. (KMOX) - It's offical. And it all started with a cup of coffee.

Paul Goldschmidt's five-year extension with the Cardinals was announced on a sunny Saturday at the team's spring training complex, anchoring him in St. Louis through at least 2024. Financial terms were not disclosed, but it has been widely reported to be worth $130 million dollars over the five-year period, beginning in 2020.

"A few weeks ago, I ran into Goldy," said John Mozeliak, the team's president of baseball operations. "And over a cup of coffee that I was sipping, we talked about potentially trying to find a way to make this his permanent home. I'm happy to report that after speaking with him, speaking with (agent) Casey Close, we finally got to a point where we could do that."

The deal surpasses Matt Holiday's seven-year, $120 million contract, signed in 2010, as the highest in franchise history.

Goldschmidt would have become a free agent - and perhaps the most attractive on the market - at the end of the 2019 season. Instead, he'll be playing first base and batting in the middle of the Cardinals order for the foreseeable future.

"He's certainly been one of the best players in baseball," Cardinals chairman Bill DeWitt, Jr. said in announcing the extension. "Perennial All-Star and an admired teammate. It's great to have a fixture in the lineup and I know 'Shildty' (manager Mike Shildt) will be happy to just write that name in every single day."

Related: Breaking down the last positions TBD on Cardinals Opening Day roster

The Cardinals traded for Goldschmidt on December 5 in a four-player trade with the Diamondbacks. At the time, the hope was that Cardinals fans would be able to assist in recruiting one of the game's greats, beginning with the traditional home opener treatment at Busch Stadium on April 4. That will no longer be necessary, although the reception will be just as loud -- if not even more boisterous.

"It's beneficial to get it done before (the season) and just focus on playing the game," Goldchmidt said. "You don't want any distractions. I was just looking forward to getting ready for Opening Day, for the season and trying to help us win."

Goldschmidt batted third in the lineup again Saturday against the Nationals, one day before the team departs for Memphis to play an exhibition game against the franchise's Triple-A club.

"It's all baseball," Goldschmidt said. "And it would have been that way anyway. But this makes it a little easier."

Last week, the 31-year-old spoke to KMOX about his expectations for his first Cardinals home opener celebration.

He has been a National League All-Star each of the past six seasons (2013-18), and he is a four-time (2013, 2015, 2017, 2018) N.L. and Silver Slugger award winner. Goldschmidt is the lone N.L. player to be named an All-Star each of the past six seasons, and he’s one of just three players (Mike Trout and Salvador Pérez) in all of the majors to have done so.

The right-handed hitting Goldschmidt batted .290 in 2018 with 33 home runs and 83 RBI, finishing 6th in National League MVP voting.  The 6-3, 225-pound Delaware native has compiled a career .297 batting mark with 209 HR’s and 710 RBI in 1,092 games and has hit 30 or more homers in four of the last six seasons, including a league-leading 36 in 2013 when he finished 2nd in MVP voting.

 

Related story: Goldschmidt has lived up to 'gold standard' with Cardinals

“Goldy” owns a career .398 on-base pct. and .532 slugging mark, and since 2013, ranks 2nd among National League leaders in home runs (181), RBI (602), hits (996), runs (599), walks (575), extra base hits (413).  Goldschmidt is the current leader among active MLB first basemen with a .996 fielding percentage and he ranks 5th all-time in MLB history.