It might seem like committing $426.5 million to one player is a dangerous business decision, but Mike Trout doesn’t represent a gamble to the Los Angeles Angels. Trout is one of the biggest stars in the sport, and when his contract was due for renewal, the Angels wanted to reward him. The center fielder signed the richest contract in the history of American sports in 2019, but he’s good value for it.
The ‘most valuable’ Most Valuable Player
Mike Trout is still a relatively young baseball player, and since making his MLB debut in 2011, he has been named the American League MVP three times. He was Rookie of the Year in 2012 and has seven Silver Slugger awards alongside eight All-Star appearances. Trout is undeniably the best player on the Angels roster, but so far, all of his talent hasn’t got a World Series to show for it.
The Angels can pay what they deem necessary
Unlike franchises in the NBA, NFL, and NHL, there is no salary cap for MLB teams, which means one day Trout might have a team of All-Stars around him. That lack of hard salary cap means Trout can, in theory, be paid much more than athletes in other sports.
Although baseball stars are big names within their own sport, unlike other athletes, they don’t have as much marketability outside of their league. Luckily for the Angels, baseball is still a massive sport in the United States, and they earn enough to keep Trout happy. The center fielder could have gone elsewhere, but ultimately disappointed every other team in the league by staying with the Angels.
A safe bet for the Angels
The $426.5 million contract might seem a lot, but that figure is split over 12 years. It means Trout will be earning roughly $35.5 million per season, which may seem more manageable than the massive $426.5 million overall fee. For their money, the Angels are getting arguably the best player in the league, and they have tied him to their franchise for over a decade. Eventually, the rest of the jigsaw should come together, and the Angels can subsequently win their second World Series with Trout leading the way.
Other sports stars earn more
While Trout is earning the big bucks as far as baseball players go, he is still not earning as much as other sports stars around the world. Argentinian soccer sensation Lionel Messi reportedly earns around $120 million per year, while boxer Canelo Alvarez takes home $73 million annually through his deal with DAZN.
Even in the United States, Trout isn’t earning the most money per year, with NBA stars Steph Curry taking home $37.5 million, and James Harden earning over $40 million annually. Trout is only estimated to earn around $2.5 million through endorsements, while NBA star Kevin Durant takes home $300 million through his Nike shoe deal.
While Trout is making a lot of money for a baseball star, he remains in the shadows of other professional athletes who make a ton more.