Goldschmidt, D-backs agree on 5-year contract

The Arizona Diamondbacks have completed a five-year, $32 million

contract agreement with first baseman Paul Goldschmidt.

The announcement Saturday came a day after multiple reports said

the two sides were close to a deal.

Goldschmidt says he loves it in Arizona and doesn’t want to play

anywhere else.

The contract runs through the 2018 season with a $14.5 million

club option for 2019.

”I couldn’t be happier,” Goldschmidt said at a news conference

at Chase Field, where Arizona opens its season Monday against the

St. Louis Cardinals.

The 25-year-old first baseman hit .286 with 43 doubles, 20 home

runs and 82 RBIs last year, his first full season in the

majors.

The agreement means three infielders are locked into long-term

contracts with the Diamondbacks. Earlier this year, Arizona reached

contract agreements with second baseman Aaron Hill and third

baseman Martin Prado.

Goldschmidt will still make $500,000 this year. The new deal

gives Goldschmidt a $500,000 signing bonus, $1 million in 2014, $3

million in 2015, $5.75 million in 2016, $8.75 million in 2017, and

$11 million in 2018.

”I’m excited we got this done, especially before the start of

the year,” Goldschmidt said. ”It does make it so it’s one less

thing to worry about.”

Goldschmidt rose rapidly through the Diamondbacks’ minor league

system after Arizona selected him in the eighth round of the draft

out of Texas State in 2008.

”Probably a lot of people didn’t give him much of a shot based

on where he was drafted,” general manager Kevin Towers said, ”and

all he did was prove people wrong all the way through the minor

leagues. They said he couldn’t play defense and he ended up being,

I think, one of the better defenders at first base in our

league.”

This would mark the fifth significant contract for the

Diamondbacks this year following deals with Hill, Prado, closer

J.J. Putz and shortstop Cliff Pennington. A year ago, Arizona

signed catcher Miguel Montero to a long-term contract.

”It’s the right group that we want going forward,” Towers

said.