- Charlie Blackmon signed a six-year contract with the Rockies on April 4, 2018.
- Without an extension, he’ll enter free agency at the end of the 2023 season.
The 2023 season is Charlie Blackmon’s 13th in MLB with the Colorado Rockies, and it’s strange to think of the 36-year-old playing anywhere else. He’s one of the longest-tenured and most accomplished players in franchise history, so the idea of him putting on another team’s jersey is more than a little jarring.
Blackmon was selected by the Rockies 72nd overall in the 2008 MLB Draft and debuted in the majors on June 7, 2011. On April 4, 2018, Blackmon signed a six-year, $108 million contract with the Rockies, including a $2-million signing bonus, for an annual average salary of $18 million.
Without an extension, Blackmon will enter free agency at the end of the 2023 season.
CHUCK NAZTY BLASTY pic.twitter.com/41zT0hjf0Y
— Colorado Rockies (@Rockies) April 1, 2023
Throughout his career, the four-time All-Star (2014, 2017-2019) has won two Silver Slugger Awards (2016, 2017) and was both the NL batting champion and triples leader in 2017. As of April 12, Blackmon is slashing .317/.391/.439 in 2023 with one home run and four RBIs.
So, with free agency on the horizon, where could Blackmon play next season?
Charlie Blackmon: Potential Landing Spots
Even if it’s just a one- or two-year deal, I see the most likely scenario to be the Rockies offering Blackmon an extension after 2023. He’s been an integral part of the team’s roster for over a decade, and if he wants to keep going, I think it’s unlikely Colorado will send him elsewhere.
As of April 12, Blackmon has a career batting average of .297 with 203 home runs and 713 RBIs, and his 2023 stats prove he’s still in fine form, even if last season was a mixed bag.
At the end of the day, Blackmon is a reliable and strong performer both offensively and in the field, as well as a fan favorite in Colorado. The Rockies would be mad to let him walk away without a fight.
1⃣6⃣0⃣0⃣ hits for @Chuck_Nazty pic.twitter.com/ACPIB072Dt
— Colorado Rockies (@Rockies) April 9, 2023
The Marlins currently have Jazz Chisholm Jr., Bryan De La Cruz, Jesús Sánchez, Jorge Soler, and Avisaíl García to rotate around the outfield, but don’t let that fool you into thinking they don’t have a desperate need for a star out there.
Miami’s center field has been a revolving door of fill-ins since they dealt Starling Marte at the 2021 trade deadline, with six players spending time in the position in 2022.
Last season, García and Soler combined for just 21 homers and 69 RBIs, each playing in fewer than 100 games. Chisholm is undeniable at the plate, but he’s a second baseman, and it’s still yet to be established whether his transition to the outfield will work out long-term.
Blackmon could be a great fit for the Marlins, either at the trade deadline or in free agency. Not only is he a reliable everyday outfielder, but he’s also a strong hitter, which Miami desperately needs. If the Rockies don’t offer an extension, I expect the Marlins to be a major contender to sign him off the market.
Now, I do think Blackmon has a few more good years in him if he wants them, but if the Rockies don’t offer an extension, I’d say there’s a non-zero chance he retires.
Blackmon is 36 years old and has 13 successful years under his belt — he’s got nothing to prove. He’s spent his entire career with the Rockies, and if he wants to leave that record untainted, there’s nothing stopping him from hanging up his glove.
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