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Dykstra, Phillies Agree on Contract

December 24, 1993|ROSS NEWHAN | From Staff and Wire Reports

Lenny Dykstra and the Philadelphia Phillies have reached agreement on a four-year contract extension that will make Dykstra the highest-paid leadoff hitter in baseball history.

Dykstra, who gets $2.6 million in 1994 under terms of his current contract, will be guaranteed $24.9 million in the four-year extension and $30.4 million if he qualifies for a fifth-year option.

He will receive a $2 million signing bonus and salaries of $5.7 million in 1995 and '96 and $5.5 million in 1997 and '98. A $6 million salary in 1999 automatically vests if he has 500 plate appearances in 1998. Otherwise, he will receive a $500,000 buyout.

The $6.225-million average annual value of the guarantee puts Dykstra among the five highest-paid players and dwarfs the $4.4-million average that Rickey Henderson, generally considered the greatest leadoff hitter ever, received in his return to the Oakland Athletics.

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