The Rangers met with Carlos Rodon after signing Jacob deGrom
A year later both signed and shocked baseball Marcus Semien And Corey Seager For a combined half a billion dollars, the Rangers appear to be considering a similar double dip, at least in the deep end of the free-agent pool. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports The Rangers met Carlos Rodon Just one day after signing Jacob DeGrom A hefty five-year, $185MM deal.
With deGrom in Texas and Justin Verlander After agreeing to a deal with the Mets, Rodon is the only free-agent ace on the board. He is said to have been I want a six year contract Worth more than $30MM annually — a hefty sum for a pitcher with a long injury history that includes both shoulder surgery and Tommy John surgery.
That said, Rodon has left little doubt in recent years that he is one of the most talented pitchers in the sport. After signing a $3MM cushion contract with the White Sox through the 2020-21 offseason, he finally made good on the expectations attached to his name with his No. 3 overall selection in the draft. Through the first four months of the 2021 season, Rodon was arguably the best pitcher in baseball and looked to be the clear front-runner for the American League Cy Young Award.
Shoulder fatigue limited Rawdon to just 28 innings over the final two months of the season, and when he pitched down the stretch in 2021, it was often at a lower velocity. The White Sox were apparently wary enough that they declined a qualifying offer, and Rodon signed a two-year, $44MM deal with the Giants that allowed him to hit the open market once he reached 110 innings in the season.
Rodon not only reached 110 innings, but he did so once again putting himself on the periphery of the Cy Young race. The lefty tossed a career-high 178 innings with a 2.88 ERA, kept his velocity late in the season and averaged better than 5 2/3 innings in starts as a member of the Giants. He led the National League in strikeouts and, through Opening Day 2021, led all major league pitchers (200 innings min) with a 33.9% strikeout rate. Rodon did all of this while pitching to a combined ERA of 2.67 with similarly excellent marks in FIP (2.42) and SIERA (2.88).
Onlookers may wonder how Rangers can continue to spend so aggressively in such a short period of time – especially when so many teams have been averse to paying the luxury tax in recent seasons. The increase in the luxury tax threshold in the 2022-26 collective bargaining agreement certainly plays a role, as the first-tier threshold jumps from $210MM in 2021 to $233MM this upcoming season.
The luxury tax, however, isn’t a major issue for the Rangers — at least not yet. Roster Resource Project That they currently have about $192.4MM in luxury obligations, meaning even signing Rodon at a $30MM AAV would leave them with more than $10MM of breathing room from the first tier of the penalty. It’s also worth noting that the penalties for first-time offenders are rather lenient – relatively speaking. The Rangers will pay a 20% tax on the first $20MM by which they exceed the $233MM threshold and a 30% tax on the next $20MM. Even breaking the luxury barrier by $40MM would require the Rangers to pay a $10MM penalty — about the value of signing a back-of-the-rotation starter in the current market.
Of course, signing Rodon would set the Rangers up for a potential long-term status as a luxury provider. deGrom, Seager, Semien and combinations thereof John Gray That amount by itself is $107.5MM, and using $30MM+ for Rodon would put Texas about 60% of the way into luxury territory even beyond the 2024 campaign — and that doesn’t include arbitration-eligible players and pre-Arbie players rounding out the roster.
Texas, however, is enjoying the fruits of a newly built stadium that drew more than two million fans in 2022 and can safely assume that number will climb in 2023, with deGrom (at least) now on board. Ownership of all 30 clubs is likely to be willing to spend a bit more after the league BAMTech has sold its remaining 15% stake $900MM to Disney, whose spoils were split between the parties Meanwhile, Lucrative streaming deals with Apple and NBC/Peacock Increased revenue for the league’s 30 teams. Heading into the 2022 season, national television and streaming rights have provided all 30 teams with about $65MM in revenue before factoring in local television deals, attendance, concessions and other sources of revenue.
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