In the world of Major League Baseball, the Texas Rangers turned the stove on and made the biggest splash of free agency so far by signing pitcher Jacob deGrom to a five-year $185MM deal yesterday.
There is an option for a sixth year that can bring the value to a reported $222MM.
The highly sought-after right-hander, at least by the Rangers and Mets, had been considered one of the best available arms on the market and it took an impressive financial package bring him to Texas. The AAV will make deGrom the second highest paid pitcher in MLB history.
The addition of deGrom is seen as a major coup for the Rangers and adds another star talent to their roster. He has long been regarded as one of baseball’s most dominant pitchers and comes with a repertoire that includes an impressive four-seam fastball, slider, change, curveball, changeup and sinker.
Over his nine years in MLB, deGrom has racked up numerous accolades including, NL Rookie of the year (2014), two Cy Young Awards (2018 and 2019) four All-Star appearances (2015, 2018, 2019 & 2021), led the league with a 1.70 ERA (2018), led the National League in strikeouts with 255 and 104 (2019 & 2020) and lead the National League pitchers in strikeouts per nine innings with 13.8 in 2020.
deGrom’s career numbers are super impressive
- 82-57 win-loss
- 2.52 earned run average
- 0.998 WHIP
- 2.1 walks per nine
- 10.9 strikeouts per nine
- 43.8 bWAR
With a formidable lineup boasting stars such as Corey Seager, Marcus Semien, and Adolis García alongside youngsters like Josh Jung and Ezequiel Duran – adding the best pitcher, when healthy, up their sleeve could help see the Rangers become real players in postseason contention.
It will be interesting to see deGrom face the likes of the Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani (Angels), Julio Rodriguez (Mariners), Jeremy Peña and Yordan Alvarez (Astros).
Ultimately, this comes down to health which is always a concern with any pitcher. The Rangers seem to be comfortable with the medicals which is why they went 5 years.
A healthy Jacob deGrom is worth every penny spent by Texas. I thought he’d net a contract with an AAV of $40-$42MM a year, so I see this as a slight bargain for the Rangers.
As of now the Rangers 2023 starting rotation looks something like this:
- Jacob deGrom
- Jon Gray
- Martín Pérez
- Jake Odorizzi
- Dane Dunning/Glenn Otto/Cole Ragans
And they’re not done.
deGrom’s introductory press conference is expected after the completion of the winter meetings.
Going forward the next few seasons promise to be exciting. The Rangers have landed their ace, I believe the first since Nolan Ryan, not including trades. It’s an exciting time to be a Rangers fan. Our time is coming. 2024.