It was reported earlier this offseason that the Astros were expected to discuss a contract extension with their star left-handed pitcher Dallas Keuchel. So far, though, that hasn’t happened, according to Keuchel’s agent Darek Braunecker on Sunday while on MLB Network Radio. Braunecker said:
“At this point, we have not engaged the club in any sort of long-term discussions. It’s common knowledge that we had some discussion during the season last year and it was just preliminary seeing where one another stood. They approached us, just kicked the tires, and [got] a sense where both parties were at the time.”
Keuchel, who turned 28 on New Year’s Day, is in his first of three years of arbitration eligibility and can become a free agent after the 2018 season. An extension would, presumably, cover all three arbitration years plus at least one or two free agency years.
The Astros’ ace, this past season, compiled a 20-8 record, a 2.48 ERA, and a 216/51 K/BB ratio over 232 innings. Both his innings and wins totals led the league. Keuchel received 22 of 30 first place votes to win the American League Cy Young Award over runner-up David Price. Whether he chooses to go through the arbitration process or sign a long-term deal, Keuchel is in for a serious raise after earning just over the league minimum in 2015.