Zimmerman’s current contract was set to expire after the 2013 season. The extension includes a seventh-year option that could keep Zimmerman in a Nationals uniform through the 2020 season. Financial terms of the extension weren’t immediately known.
The two sides talked late into Saturday night, making enough progress for Zimmerman to extend a Saturday deadline that coincided with the start of full-squad workouts. The 27-year-old wanted to get a deal done or shelve the talks so his contract situation wouldn’t be a distraction to the team, which has high hopes in the NL East this season.
Zimmerman had two seasons left on a $45 million, five-year contract. The main sticking point appeared to be the slugger’s desire for a no-trade clause, or at least some assurance that he wouldn’t be dealt by the only team he’s played for in the big leagues.
The Nationals wanted to lock Zimmerman up so he can play alongside No. 1 draft picks Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper.
“All along, all I’ve wanted is to be able to stay with the Nationals, which I consider my hometown team, and help the franchise become a winner while also being compensated fairly,” Zimmerman said in a statement Saturday. “I’m from Virginia, I was drafted by the Nationals and I’ve seen this organization make great progress since I signed here. I want to see it through to the ultimate goal of winning a World Series.”
Zimmerman was the team’s first draft pick after the Montreal Expos moved to Washington in 2005 and quickly became the face of the franchise. He’s been an NL All-Star, while also capturing Gold Glove and Silver Slugger awards.
Last season, Zimmerman was limited by injuries to 395 at-bats. He hit .289 with 12 homers, 21 doubles and 49 RBIs.
Information from ESPN The Magazine’s Buster Olney and The Associated Press was used in this report.
Sources: Nats’ Zimmerman gets six-year deal
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