Prince Fielder remains unsigned and another high-profile Scott Boras client, Edwin Jackson, is also still on the market.
And if this report from ESPN New York is accurate we know why, as Wallace Matthews writes that Jackson is said to be seeking a five-year deal worth approximately $60 million.
C.J. Wilson got $77.5 million for five seasons from the Angels and Mark Buehrle got $48 million for four seasons from the Marlins, but they went off the market before options for starting pitchers dwindled and have more impressive track records than Jackson, who posted a 3.79 ERA in 200 innings last season and has a 4.46 career mark.
Of course, Jackson is also just 28 years old and because of that a five-season contract could make sense … assuming a team wants to make a long-term commitment to a guy who’s pitched for six teams in nine years.
Matthews reports that the Yankees definitely won’t be that team unless Jackson’s demands drop, because they just don’t have room in the budget.
Following the Astros’ decisive 4-0 shutout over the Yankees on Saturday night, Justin Verlander was named the Most Valuable Player of the American League Championship Series. Hall of Fame outfielder and former MLB manager Frank Robinson handed the award to Verlander, who was beaming as he thanked his teammates and members of the Astros’ organization.
“I’ve got to say, it came down to the wire, and one thing kept going off in my head was Dallas,” Verlander told the crowd gathered at Minute Maid Park. “When he called me, he said that I won’t regret my decision to join the Houston Astros. And here we are right now, it’s the best feeling in the world. We’ve got four more wins to win a World Series, and I do not regret my decision to come here. This is the best feeling a player can have. So, thank you.”
Among a cast that boasted the likes of Jose Altuve, Carlos Correa and Dallas Keuchel, among others, Verlander was spectacular. He locked down a complete game win in Game 2, holding the Yankees to one run on five hits and a walk and striking out a postseason-high 13 batters. In Game 6, he saved the Astros from elimination with seven scoreless innings, helping propel the club to their eventual 7-1 finish that set up their series-clinching finale on Saturday.
The 34-year-old righty also took his place among some postseason greats. Thanks to an eight-strikeout outing on Friday night, his collective 136 postseason strikeouts are good for sixth-most in MLB playoff history, just a smidgen shy of Tom Glavine (143), Mike Mussina (145), Roger Clemens (173), Andy Pettitte (183) and John Smoltz (199). He also joined Bob Gibson, Curt Schilling and Sandy Koufax as one of just four hurlers to strike out 20+ Yankees in a postseason series.