Dan Szymborski has a great analysis of the exceptionally complicated contract that still has wet ink on its pages. Excited Julio will be a Mariner for the foreseeable future, and having Julio will be an enticement for other top players to think hard about making a move northwest.
Not to mention the structure of the contract seems to make sense for both the team and Julio.
This paragraph also emphasizes how forthcoming the FO has been with Julio. DiPoto told the press that if Julio played well, he’d break camp with the team. Julio played fantastically, and he’s been with the team all season.
The Mariners not playing games with J-Rod’s service time clock has paid off handsomely. If Rodríguez had been held in the minors for a few weeks, he’d still likely be in the top two for AL Rookie of the Year voting, which would have resulted in him accruing a full year of service time anyway. And he’s been so good that it might have cost Seattle at least a win, which could have plausibly resulted in the team missing on a Wild Card spot it otherwise would have won. Hopefully, this will encourage other clubs to stop monkeying around with service time quite as much, especially with their ultra-elite prospects.