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.
The Astros are in agreement with right-hander Justin Verlander on a two-year, $66 million extension, Mark Feinsand of MLB.com was among those to report on Friday. With no money deferred, the $33 million he’ll receive over the next two years will set a record AAV for major-league pitchers; something MLB Network’s Jon Heyman says matters to Verlander, who “cares how his deals affect markets (and fellow players).”
While it’s far from the five-year, $100 million extension teammate Alex Bregman signed with the club on Friday, the deal will give the Astros a bigger window to consider their long-term plans for the ace before he hits free agency again. Prior to Saturday’s agreement, Verlander’s original contract — the hefty seven-year, $180 million arrangement he reached with the Tigers in 2013 — was set to expire at the conclusion of the 2019 season.
It’s difficult to overestimate the value Verlander has provided to the Astros since they acquired him from the Tigers back in 2017. He was named the 2017 ALCS MVP following seven shutout innings in a must-win Game 6 performance and helped the Astros clinch their first franchise World Series title. In 2018, he earned his seventh career All-Star distinction and received consideration for both AL Cy Young and MVP awards after pitching to a 16-9 record in 34 starts with a 2.52 ERA, 1.6 BB/9, 12.2 SO/9 (the product of a career-high 290 strikeouts), and 6.7 fWAR over 214 innings.
The deal has not been confirmed by the team.