If Derek Jeter is going to be a $17 million man in 2014, he's going to need a new trophy case -- because the only way he can earn that salary is to collect a lot of trophies over the next three years.
Jeter signed a three-year, $51 million deal with the New York Yankees this week that contains a player option for 2014.
It was that complicated 2014 clause that helped Jeter and the Yankees bridge their negotiating gap last week. Now ESPN.com has learned the details of that clause from a baseball official familiar with the contract details.
Jeter is guaranteed salaries of $15 million next year, $16 million in 2012 and $17 million in 2013, with $2 million of that money deferred without interest in each of those seasons. But it's in 2014 when the creative player option kicks in, at a salary that could range between $8 million and $17 million, depending on how Jeter plays in the first three years.
The player option for 2014 starts at $8 million. It then can go up by:
• $4 million if he wins an MVP award in 2011, '12 or '13.
• $2 million if he finishes second through sixth in any of those years.
• $1.5 million if he wins a Silver Slugger in any of those years.
• $500,000 if he wins a Gold Glove in any of those years.
• $500,0000 if he wins an LCS MVP award in any of those years.
• $500,000 if he wins a World Series MVP award in any of those years.
There is no limit to how many times he can earn any of those escalator payouts. However, the most he can get paid in 2014 is $17 million, meaning he can earn no more than $9 million in increases.
If the option is picked up for any amount less than $17 million, he can also earn any of those amounts in 2014 -- up to a max of $17 million earned.
In addition, the deal contains a $3 million buyout if the option isn't picked up, which brings the guaranteed portion of the contract to $51 million over three years.
Senior writer Jayson Stark covers Major League Baseball for ESPN.com.