Coming off the best season of his career, in which he earned the National League Cy Young and led all of Major League Baseball with a 1.70 ERA, Jacob deGrom has officially been locked down by the New York Mets.
As first reported by SNY’s Andy Martino early Tuesday morning, the Mets and deGrom have agreed upon a five-year extension.
The deal, as noted by ESPN’s Jeff Passan, is worth $137.5 million in guaranteed money over five seasons (2019-2023), and includes a sixth-year option worth an additional $32.5 million. Should deGrom and the Mets exercise the sixth-year option, deGrom is slated to make $170 million over the next six seasons, $120.5 million of which is new money. The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal confirmed that the deal includes a full no-trade clause and offers deGrom an opt-out following the 2022 season.
DeGrom, who was set to make $17 million this season under his current deal, will now earn $7 million plus a $10 million signing bonus (keeping compensation the same) and will be paid an average annual value (AAV) of $27.5 million. Rosenthal noted the new deal covers two years of arbitration and three free agency years. DeGrom would have become arbitration eligible in 2020 absent this contract extension.
The announcement of the deal comes as an unexpected surprise for Mets fans and even deGrom, who as recently as Saturday had expressed a lack of optimism about reaching a deal with his club, following a series of dissatisfactory short-term offers of roughly $90 million guaranteed. Throughout the course of this offseason, deGrom had put pressure on the Mets by insisting that he would not negotiate an extension following the start of the season and would seek a trade should a deal not be agreed upon by Opening Day.
DeGrom’s remarkable 2018 season was somewhat muddied by the Mets 4th place NL East finish and disappointing 77-85 campaign. DeGrom was the second pitcher since 1913 to post a sub 2.0 ERA (1.70 ERA), with 250+ (269) strikeouts and less than 50 walks.
However, despite his statistical accolades, deGrom’s record was the worst ever by a Cy Young award-winning pitcher, at 10-9. As a result, some speculated that deGrom may seek a trade to a team with more offensive prowess; one with a real chance of contending for a World Series.
Coming off a Winter of significant offensive additions, headlined by veteran slugger 2B Robinson Cano, the Mets should have a more productive offense and a legitimate chance in a newly improved NL East division.
In a baseball environment that seems to be moving rapidly away from free agency, (With the inclusion of deGrom’s deal) teams have now spent roughly $1.073 billion on 10 blockbuster extensions in the past seven days.