Winn, Giants agree to $23.25 million, 3-year deal
Winn, acquired before last season's trading deadline from Seattle, batted .359 with 14 home runs after joining the Giants last season. The 31-year-old is on the U.S. roster for the World Baseball Classic.
"He's a leadoff hitter with a lot of dimensions," general manager Brian Sabean said. "We signed him longterm because of the type of player he is. A center fielder with run-producing potential is a rarity. The fans warmed up to him. There's a lot to like about Randy Winn."
The switch-hitting Winn, slated to be the team's leadoff hitter and starting center fielder this season, will get a $3 million signing bonus and salaries of $4 million in 2007, $8 million in 2008 and $8.25 million in 2009, according to agent Craig Landis.
Winn will make $5 million this season in the option year of his prior deal.
Winn, who was reared in the East Bay and attended Santa Clara University, also was enthused about the signing that should keep him close to home for a while. A .288 hitter in eight major league seasons, Winn called the extension "a dream come true."
He felt that way when the Mariners traded him, and exceeded expectations with his two months, a stretch of success that included a major league-leading 51 hits in September, the highest monthly output by a Giant in at least 30 years.
"I was excited when I was traded back to the Bay Area," Winn said. "It was fun to come back home and play. I don't know if I could have believed this last July. It's almost too good to be true.
"And then the selection to the U.S. team -- it's all happening so fast. I can't complain."
Winn insists the gaudy finish with the Giants and his new job security won't create unrealistic expectations. Although his 14 home runs as a Giant matched his season total anywhere else, he doesn't regard himself as a power hitter.
"There are a lot of things going on with Barry (Bonds) going for the [home run] record, so I don't worry about that," he said of raised expectations. "My job is to get on base. I just want to win. With everything going on with Barry, I can fly under the radar screen -- just the way I like it."
Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press