The MLB winter meetings in San Diego got off to a rip-roaring start on Monday with the defending champion Washington Nationals inking Stephen Strasburg to a record-breaking seven-year, $245 million contract.
This deal in and of itself is going to have wide-ranging implications on how the market plays out, especially when looking at free-agent starting pitchers.
This was not the only news to break from Southern California. The Gerrit Cole sweepstakes is heating up with one team about to make an offer and another seemingly falling flat in pursuit of the perennial Cy Young candidate.
It’s in this that we look at the top winners and losers from Day 1 of the MLB winter meetings.
This reigning World Series MVP blew the lid off the starting pitching market, agreeing to a seven-year, $245 million deal to remain in the nation’s capital. To put this into perspective, Strasburg’s average annual salary of $35 million equates to over $1 million per start throughout a 162-game regular season.
It’s astonishing to see how super agent Scott Boras continues to play teams like a fiddle. Strasburg’s deal calls for deferments, which means its total value will be a lot more than that $245 million figure. It also called for a full no-trade clause. Not too shabby for a dominant pitcher who is averaging a mere 26 starts over the past five seasons.