Jacob deGrom is headed to the free-spending Texas Rangers, who consider the well being chance is definitely worth the attainable praise in looking to finish a six-year shedding streak.
The two-time Cy Young Award winner agreed to a $185m, five-year contract on Friday, leaving the New York Mets after 9 seasons – the previous two shortened considerably by means of accidents.
“We acknowledge the risk, but we also acknowledge that in order to get great players, there is a risk and a cost associated with that,” Rangers common supervisor Chris Young mentioned. “And one we feel like is worth taking with a player of Jacob’s caliber.”
Texas introduced the signing after the 34-year-old deGrom handed his bodily.
The Rangers had been additionally giant spenders in loose company final offseason, signing shortstop Corey Seager ($325m, 10 years) and 2nd baseman Marcus Semien ($175m, seven years).
“It fits in so many ways in terms of what we need,” Young mentioned. “He’s a tremendous person. I have a number of close friends and teammates who played with Jacob and love him. I think he’s going to be just a perfect fit for our clubhouse and our fans.”
Texas had modest expectations after adding Seager, Semien and starter Jon Gray ($56m, four years) last offseason but still fell short of them. The Rangers went 68–94, firing manager Chris Woodward during the season, and then hired Bruce Bochy, a three-time World Series champion with San Francisco. Texas’ six straight losing seasons are the team’s worst skid since the franchise moved from Washington in 1972.
Rangers owner Ray Davis said the club would not hesitate to keep adding payroll. Including the $19.65m qualifying offer accepted by Martin Perez, the team’s best pitcher last season, the Rangers have spent nearly $761m in free agency over the past year.
“I hate losing, but I think there’s one person in our organization who hates losing worse than me, and I think it’s Ray Davis,” Young mentioned. “He’s bored with shedding. I’m bored with shedding. Our group is bored with shedding.
After making his first start in early August last season, deGrom went 5–4 with a 3.08 ERA in 11 outings. He helped the Mets reach the playoffs, then passed up a $30.5m salary for 2023 and opted out of his contract to become a free agent for the first time.
That ended his deal with the Mets at $107m over four years, and deGrom rejected their $19.65m qualifying offer in November. New York would receive draft-pick compensation for losing him.
The fan favorite becomes the latest in a long line of aces to leave the Mets, including Nolan Ryan, Tom Seaver, Dwight Gooden and David Cone.
When healthy, deGrom is perhaps baseball’s most dominant pitcher. His 2.52 career ERA ranks third in the expansion era (since 1961) behind Los Angeles Dodgers lefty Clayton Kershaw (2.48) and Hall of Famer Sandy Koufax (2.19) among those with at least 200 starts.
The right-hander is 4-1 with a 2.90 ERA in five career postseason starts, including a win over San Diego in the wildcard round this year that extended the Mets’ season. New York were eliminated the next night.
A four-time All-Star and the 2014 NL Rookie of the Year, deGrom was a ninth-round draft pick by the Mets in 2010 out of Stetson, where he played shortstop before moving to the mound. He was slowed by Tommy John surgery early in his career and didn’t reach the majors until age 26.
Once he arrived, though, he blossomed. He helped the Mets reach the 2015 World Series and earn a 2016 playoff berth before winning consecutive NL Cy Young Awards in 2018 and 2019. But injuries to his elbow, forearm and shoulder blade have limited him to 26 starts over the past two seasons. He compiled a career-low 1.08 ERA over 92 innings in 2021, but did not pitch after July 7 that year because of arm trouble.
He gets $30m next year, $40m in 2024 and 2025, $38m in 2026 and $37m in 2027. The deal includes a conditional option for 2028 with no guaranteed money.
The addition of deGrom gives the Rangers three proven starters along with Gray and Perez, who went 12-8 with a career-best 2.89 ERA in his return to the team that signed him as a teenager out of Venezuela. Young didn’t rule out the addition of another starter.
With a number of holes on their beginning body of workers, the Mets have proven hobby in loose brokers Justin Verlander and Carlos Rodon to pair with 38-year-old Max Scherzer atop the rotation. Now, with deGrom long gone, signing a kind of two may turn out to be a far larger precedence.