Chourio gets $82 million, 8-year deal with Brewers, largest before a player’s big league debut

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Outfielder Jackson Chourio agreed to the largest contract for a player with no major league experience, an $82 million, eight-year deal with the Milwaukee Brewers announced Monday.

The 19-year-old has played only six games above the Double-A level. His deal includes team options for 2032 and 2033.

He broke the previous high for a player yet to make his debut, a $50 million, six-year deal outfielder Luis Robert signed with the Chicago White Sox in 2020. Robert’s agreement was announced on Jan. 2, 2020, and he hade his MLB debut on July 24 of that year. Chicago also gave a $43 million, six-year contract to designated hitter/outfielder Eloy Jiménez in March 2019 ahead of his debut.

Chourio could start the 2024 season in the major leagues. The deal covers his entire period of arbitration eligibility and what potentially would have been his first two seasons after free agency.

Milwaukee is starting its first season under manager Pat Murphy following the departure of Craig Counsell, who left to manage the Chicago Cubs.

The Brewers won an NL Central title last year while getting contributions from plenty of rookies, with Brice Turang starting at second base and Sal Frelick and Joey Wiemer playing the outfield. Garrett Mitchell also was the Brewers’ starting center fielder at the beginning of the season before a shoulder injury knocked him out for much of the year.

Chourio is regarded as one of baseball’s top prospects in all of baseball. Although he doesn’t turn 20 until March 11, Chourio has advanced rapidly enough in the Brewers’ farm system that he played six games for Triple-A Nashville late this past season.

He’s the first player in Brewers franchise history to be selected the organization’s minor league player of the year twice. Chourio received a $1.8 million signing bonus when he joined the Brewers organization out of Venezuela in 2021.

Chourio batted .283 with a .338 on-base percentage, 22 homers, 91 RBIs and 44 steals in 128 combined games with Double-A Biloxi and Triple-A Nashville in 2023. He hit .288 with a .342 on-base percentage 20 homers, 75 RBIs and 16 steals in 99 combined games with Class A Carolina and Wisconsin, and Biloxi in 2022.