NEW YORK (AP) — Francisco Lindor was alone in a Washington, D.C., hotel room Wednesday night when he got the call from agent David Meter: the New York Mets had offered $341 million — $1 million more than Fernando Tatis Jr. got in February.
The biggest payday ever for a shortstop.
“I wanted to yell,” Lindor said Thursday. “I wanted to scream as loud as I could.”
Lindor kept his cool — mostly — and told Meter to get it done.
The sides agreed to a $341 million, 10-year pact on the eve of opening day, terms that could keep the four-time All-Star in Queens for the rest of his career. The deal kicks in for the 2022 season, meaning Lindor will be 38 when the contract expires.
“To the fans of New York, here we go baby!” Lindor said. “Here we go. We have 11 years together. I can’t wait.”
The Mets acquired Lindor this offseason from the Cleveland Indians, who were unable to negotiate a long-term contract with the face of their franchise. New York nabbed him knowing he could walk as a free agent after this season but hopeful Lindor would be willing to forego the open market.
The 27-year-old Lindor said he wouldn’t stretch talks with the Mets beyond opening day, but even as the clock neared midnight Wednesday, he remained confident the sides would find middle ground.
“I knew something was going to happen,” he said. “It was just a matter of getting to that sweet spot.”
The deal fulfills a promise by first-year owner Steve Cohen that these Mets mean business — and have the money to back it up. Lindor’s agreement trounces David Wright’s $138 million, eight-year contract for the largest in club history.
Cohen and Lindor had dinner over the weekend, and Lindor said they spoke frankly. Lindor confirmed reports that his side had asked for $385 million over…