Braves sign Spencer Strider to 6-year, $75 million contract

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
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ATLANTA — The Atlanta Braves made another investment in their future by signing rookie right-hander Spencer Strider to a six-year, $75 million contract.

The move came one day before the Braves open their NL Division Series against the Philadelphia Phillies and less than two months after Atlanta signed another rookie, outfielder Michael Harris II, to a eight-year, $72 million deal.

Strider’s contract includes a $22 million club option for 2029 with a $5 million buyout.

Strider opened the season as a reliever but then solidified Atlanta’s rotation, helping the Braves win their fifth consecutive NL East title.

He will earn $1 million per season in 2023 and 2024, $4 million in 2025, $20 million in 2026, and $22 million per season in 2027-2028. If the 2029 option is exercised, the deal will be worth $92 million.

Strider, 23, was a surprise standout for Atlanta as he became the first pitcher in history to record at least 200 strikeouts while allowing fewer than 100 hits.

Strider was 11-5 with a 2.67 ERA in 31 games, including 20 starts. He had 202 strikeouts in 131 2/3 innings while giving up 86 hits.

An oblique injury has kept Strider sidelined since Sept. 18. The Braves have said they are optimistic he can return for the playoffs.

The Braves previously signed All-Star third baseman Austin Riley, who was already under team control for three more years, to a 10-year, $212 million contract on Aug. 1. The deal, the richest in team history, could keep Riley with Atlanta through 2032.

The deal with Harris runs through the 2030 season and includes a $15 million team option for 2031 and a $20 million team option for 2032. Each option year is accompanied by a $5 million buyout. If both option years are activated, the total value of the contract would be $102 million over 10 years.

Free agent slugger José Abreu signs 3-year, $58.5M deal with Astros

Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
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HOUSTON — Jose Abreu and the World Series champion Astros agreed to a three-year, $58.5 million contract, adding another powerful bat to Houston’s lineup.

Abreu, the 2020 AL MVP, gets $19.5 million in each of the next three seasons.

He spent his first nine major league seasons with the Chicago White Sox. The first baseman became a free agent after batting .304 with 15 home runs, 75 RBIs and an .824 OPS this year.

With the Astros, he replaces Yuli Gurriel at first base in a batting order that also features All-Star sluggers Yordan Alvarez, Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman and Kyle Tucker.

Gurriel became a free agent after Houston defeated the Philadelphia Phillies this month for its second World Series championship.

The 35-year-old Abreu becomes the biggest free agent to switch teams so far this offseason. Born in Cuba, the three-time All-Star and 2014 AL Rookie of the Year is a .292 career hitter in the majors with 243 homers, 863 RBIs and an .860 OPS.

The Astros announced the signing. Abreu was scheduled to be introduced in a news conference at Minute Maid Park.

He would get a $200,000 for winning an MVP award, $175,000 for finishing second in the voting, $150,000 for third, $125,000 for fourth and $100,000 for fifth. Abreu also would get $100,000 for earning World Series MVP and $75,000 for League Championship Series MVP, $75,000 for making the All-Star team and $75,000 for winning a Gold Glove or a Silver Slugger.

Abreu gets a hotel suite on road trips and the right to buy a luxury suite for all Astros home games.