Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton agreed Monday to the richest contract in the history of professional sports, an unprecedented 13-year extension that will pay him a staggering $325 million.
Stanton's historic deal will be made official Wednesday, according to multiple reports that surfaced on a landscape-altering day around baseball.
The Blue Jays signaled their intent to contend in the AL East, reportedly signing Canadian-born Russell Martin to a five-year, $82-million contract, the second-largest free-agent deal in franchise history.
On the trade front, the Braves appeared to move toward a rebuilding period under new general manager John Hart, dealing Gold Glove rightfielder Jayson Heyward and setup man Jordan Walden to the Cardinals for righthander Shelby Miller and pitching prospect Tyrell Jenkins.
Both those moves were dwarfed by the one pulled off by the Marlins and Stanton, the first $300-million man in the history of baseball.
At age 25, Stanton eclipsed Alex Rodriguez's 10-year, $275-million contract with the Yankees for the richest in the history of the sport.
The deal reportedly includes a no-trade clause -- a break from club policy -- and an opt-out clause after the 2020 season that Stanton could choose to leverage for another payday.
Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria told the Miami Herald that it was "a landmark day."
"We have a face of the franchise for the next 13 years," Loria told the newspaper. "I expect him to be a Marlin for 13 years. We are going to be surrounding him, we have already started to surround him, with all-star-caliber players, and there will be more."
Stanton hit .288/.395/.555 with 37 homers before his season ended Sept. 11 when he was struck in the face with a fastball. Still, he finished second to the Dodgers' Clayton Kershaw in Most Valuable Player voting.
In nearly five full seasons, Stanton has established himself as one of the game's brightest young stars. Blessed with prodigious power in an era of diminished offense around the game, Stanton is a .271/.364/.540 lifetime hitter with 154 homers.
Even if he opts out, Stanton will remain tied to the Marlins for six seasons, a development that on its own is stunning.
Stanton created waves in the winter of 2012, when the notoriously cheap Marlins traded shortstop Jose Reyes to the Blue Jays as part of a fire sale. The move came just one year after Reyes signed a six-year, $106-million contract to leave the Mets.
After the trade, Stanton took to social media to express his displeasure.
Stanton's public comments barely softened this year, only adding to the perceived unease between himself and the team. And Stanton's name became a staple in trade rumors.
Long a lightning rod for criticism, Loria responded by opening his checkbook, potentially keeping Stanton in a Marlins uniform until his 38th birthday.