According to MLB Trade Rumors, the St. Louis Cardinals are willing to discuss an extension with their MVP Paul Goldschmidt that would keep him with the team through the end of his career. Goldschmidt's five-year, $130 million contract is set to expire at the end of the 2024 season. He will earn $26.5 million this year after bonuses and base salary.
Goldschmidt has had a wonderful tenure in St. Louis, winning the National League's Most Valuable Player and a Silver Slugger in 2022 plus a Gold Glove in 2021. Across five seasons in St. Louis, Goldy has a slash line of .292/.383/.520 for an OPS+ of 147. He is a likely Hall of Fame candidate, especially after his monstrous 2022 season.
Despite a significant drop-off in 2023, Goldschmidt remains one of the best first basemen in the league. He turned thirty-six in September, so he will remain that age for the bulk of next season. A thirty-six-year-old first baseman with above-average walk rates plus a decent glove is tough to find. I recently discussed what we can expect from him next year using historical comparisons, and I found it likely that Goldschmidt has between a 3.2 bWAR and 4.0 bWAR season, placing his value next year around $35 million.
The Cardinals won't sign him for that price tag; Goldschmidt is likely seeking a contract that he can finish his career with, perhaps a three-year contract. Last offseason, the Houston Astros signed Jose Abreu to a three-year, $58.5 million contract as he was entering his age-thirty-six season. That is a good starting point when considering Paul Goldschmidt's contract extension with St. Louis.
I could foresee a contract of around three years and $60-$67.5 million for Goldschmidt with some deferrals and incentive bonuses. St. Louis could even coax Goldy into a contract extension similar to Adam Wainwright's a few years ago with a moderate average annual value but a high incentive structure.
It would be great to see another potential Hall of Famer finish his career in St. Louis. Paul Goldschmidt has served the Cardinals and their fans well these past five years, and he is a very reliable first baseman. He deserves to finish his career in St. Louis, and hopefully, the front office and his representatives can work out a contract that is mutually beneficial.