After recently giving team General Manager Mike Rizzo a new contract, Washington Nationals ownership turned some heads Friday and gave manager Dave Martinez a new three-year contract, reportedly worth $7.5 million.
Martinez and the Nats had option year after this season, and most people thought this somewhat unprecedented and early move by ownership wouldn’t occur at this point in the year.
When he initially was hired, Martinez signed a three-year deal with a club option for 2021 that had not yet been picked up by the Nationals.
Asked earlier in the week whether he would like his up-in-the-air contract status resolved before the season ends, Martinez said his agent and Rizzo had been discussing the matter.
“I love it here. I don’t see myself going anywhere else,” Martinez said then. “I appreciate the family. I appreciate this organization. We’ve built a special relationship here, so I hope I get a chance to stay for many, many years.”
Martinez turns 56 years old on Saturday and is the first manager in franchise history to win a World Series championship. He has built an overall record of 198-193 and now becomes the first person to manage the Nationals for a fourth season since it relocated from Montreal in 2005.
Washington hired the rookie manager in October 2017. For the 2018 season, Martinez went 82-80, and last year led the Nationals from a 19-31 start to a historic 93-69 record along with a World Series title.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.