Everyone knows that A.J. Pollock was officially signed to a contract by the Los Angeles Dodgers a week ago. Moreover, it was a four-year, $55 million dollar contract.
However, not everyone who clicks this article will know that Pollock has an interesting opt-out clause built into the deal. Within this post, we are going to lay it out for you.
A.J. Pollock’s Opt-Out Clause
The fine print part of the deal is covered well by the Associated Press. Before we get into all specifics of the contract, let’s look at that opt-out clause we teased in the title.
If Pollock has 1,000 plate appearances in 2020 and ’21, or 1,450 from 2019-21, he would gain the right to opt out of the contract after the 2021 season and still would receive the buyout if he does.
This is interesting – and while it’s no guarantee that Pollock would want to leave Los Angeles if he accumulates those PA’s – he’s given incentive if he stays on the field. Moreover, health has been a nagging issues of varying degrees for Pollock in several recent seasons. Now, the Dodgers have said if you can stay on the field for us, you’re giving yourself options (literally).
Still, there are more contract details to lay out for you.
Pollock’s deal includes a $10 million option for 2023 or a $5 million buyout. His 2023 salary can escalate by $5 million based on plate appearances in 2022: $1 million each for 400, 450, 500, 550 and 600. His 2023 salary also could escalate up to $5 million based on MVP finishes from 2019-22, structured on a point system with each point worth $1 million: five points for first, three points for second through fifth, and one for sixth through 10th.
If Pollock performs similarly to that 2015 season, he’s going to fatten his wallet. Again, incentives are littered throughout that reward the player for staying on the field, and performing at an elite level.
By this same token, the Dodgers signed a player who has shown the ability to be elite when healthy. It’s a win-win deal for Los Angeles because if he proves to be that player, they simply pay him a little more. If not, he’s signed to a deal that was considered fair market value within baseball.
Someday, we hopefully reference this post and say that Pollock had the ability to opt-out but decided not to after several high-octane seasons in Los Angeles.
[button link=”https://www.dodgersnation.com/the-dodgers-zips-projection-model-is-out/2019/01/31/” type=”big”] Dodgers 2019 ZiPS Projections[/button]