Khris Davis hits home run by striking deal to stay in Oakland

A's contract extension with Khris Davis reportedly worth $33.5 million through 2021 season

ARLINGTON, TEXAS – APRIL 12: Khris Davis #2 of the Oakland Athletics at bat against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington on April 12, 2019 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
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OAKLAND — The Athletics made one of the best deals in franchise history to bring Khris Davis aboard in 2016.

They made another one on Thursday, signing the slugging designated hitter to a two-year contract extension which will tie him to the Athletics through 2021. The A’s will hold a press conference at 2 p.m. Friday including Davis, general manager David Forst and manager Bob Melvin.

Davis, whose 143 home runs are the most in the major leagues since the start of the 2016 season, will receive $33.5 million for 2020 and 2021 — $16.75 million per season. The contract figures were reported by multiple outlets and first by the San Francisco Chronicle.

It’s a bargain when comparing the contract figures to those of Giancarlo Stanton, the Yankees’ outfielder whose contract averages $25 million per season and has 19 fewer home runs than Davis since 2016.

“Oakland has been a special place for me since I arrived,” Davis said in a prepared statement. “I love playing here in front of our fans, and my teammates make this feel like a family. I never hid the fact that I wanted to stay in Oakland because that is how I feel and I’m glad that I can continue to call the city of Oakland my baseball home. This team has a bright future, and I’m thrilled to be a part of it.”

Davis had 60 home runs in parts of three seasons with the Milwaukee Brewers but had defensive issues as an outfielder in the National League where there is no designated hitter. So the A’s, seeing Davis as a DH, traded a pair of minor leaguers — catcher Jacob Nottingham and pitcher Bubba Derby — and immediately had one of baseball’s most feared hitters.

Nottingham is a reserve catcher for the Brewers and Derby is pitching in Triple-A San Antonio.

“Khris is a special talent who has made a tremendous impact both on and off the field during his time here,” said Billy Beane, executive vice president of baseball operations. “He’s become one of the most beloved players to have worn an A’s uniform, and his commitment to Oakland has never wavered. He made it clear from the beginning that he wants to play, and win, right here.”

Davis, who hit a career-high and major league-leading 48 home runs with 123 RBIs last season, hit 42 and 43 home runs in his first two seasons with the A’s. He has 355 RBIs during that span, second only to Colorado third baseman Nolan Arenado’s 385.

Off to the fastest start of his career, Davis leads the major leagues with 10 home runs and is tied for fourth in RBIs with 20. Five of his 10 home runs have put the A’s ahead. He is only 10 home runs shy of the best four-year home run total in franchise history, with Mark McGwire hitting 153 home runs from 1987-90.

Last week in Baltimore, Davis had two home run games on back-to-back days and he had an eight-game hitting streak snapped in Wednesday night’s 2-1 win over the Houston Astros.

Seldom expansive with the media, Davis had little reaction when he hit his 200th career home run during the last road trip.

“It’s just a number,” Davis said. “You keep score, I’ll keep playing.”

The A’s are offering 2-for-1 tickets for all games this weekend against the Toronto Blue Jays, a three-game series starting Friday night. Two dollars from every ticket sold will benefit Make-A-Wish Greater Bay Area, and the club will sell “KD2” T-shirts at the community center behind Section 218.

Wednesday night’s 2-1 win over Houston attracted only 11,320 fans, the lowest attendance of the season and their sixth straight crowd of less than 16,000.

 

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