National League batting champion Tony Gwynn ended attempts to extend his contract with the San Diego Padres and said he may now become a free agent when it expires after the 1990 season.
Gwynn is guaranteed $840,000 this year, $940,000 next year and has an option in 1990 for $1 million. He was seeking to guarantee the option year and then guarantee two more at $1.6 million a year. The Padres reportedly agreed to the money, but refused to guarantee it.
"I'm not going to talk about my contract again until 1990, when I become a free agent," Gwynn said. "I don't want to play anywhere else, I've never wanted to, but the bottom line is I may have to."
Said club President Chub Feeney: "We want Tony to play here forever, we're in his corner. But you don't know what's going to happen three years from now. He's essentially asking for a five-year guaranteed contract, and nobody in baseball has more than a three-year contract."