Baseball

Archer looking to help family, community with new contract

Posted April 5, 2014

— One negative that comes with a brand new contract valued at $25 million – people coming out of the woodworks, forcing you to change your phone number. One of countless positives that comes with a brand new $25 million contract – helping those around you.

Last week, Clayton native Chris Archer inked a six-year deal with the Tampa Bay Rays despite having less than a year of Major League experience. The contract, which keeps him in Tampa through the 2019 season with club options in 2020 and 2021, comes with $25.5 million guaranteed. The maximum value is nearly $44 million.

“Twenty-five million over the course of six years guarantees you life security three times over,” Archer said Friday while joining Adam and Joe on 99.9 The Fan ESPN Radio. “I was raised very happy and content with much less than $25 million. I think there is a lot of good that I can do with that money, and there is a lot of added comfort knowing that I am not going to have to worry about finances again in my life.”

Archer said that the first order of business with his newfound fortune is to help his family.

“No. 1 is to make my parents debt free. They sacrificed a lot for me to get to a point in my life where I am,” Archer said. “As everyone knows, I was adopted by my grandparents, and they made sacrifices for my happiness and it’s time for me to repay them.”

The 25-year-old Archer said he will also contribute to the local communities in the Triangle and in St. Petersburg via his Archway Foundation, which is aimed at empowering youth through multiple outlets, including baseball.

“It’s going to expand my platform and allow me to reach more people and possibly fund more baseball teams in the area,” Archer said. “Help out local causes in the Johnston and Wake county area as well as down here in St. Pete. It’s not like this has to be jumpstarted tomorrow, but there are definitely new ideas in the works that are possible now with the extra liquidity that the Archway Foundation is going to have.”

Archer already repaid the Rays with a win in his season debut against Toronto, going six innings and striking out seven while allowing two runs on four hits. Unfortunately, only 9,571 people were on hand at the Trop to watch the game (for reference, that about is what the Durham Bulls drew on opening day and is only 28 percent of capacity in Tampa Bay).

“It’s not like we are running out an average squad, we are running out an A-plus squad that can compete for the division,” Archer said. “The general consensus is that we are happy for the 10-12 thousand that do come to the game.”

The 6-foot-3 righty went 9-7 in 23 starts last year with Tampa Bay and boasts an 11-10 career record. He is scheduled to throw again on Tuesday in Kansas City.

New contract in hand, Archer said he will remain humble and go to work every day.

“Like I’ve said several times, money is never going to determine your true value as a person or a player,” he said.

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