Published: Mon, March 12, 2018
Sports | By Ivan Ross

Free agent ace Jake Arrieta, Phillies reach three-year deal

Free agent ace Jake Arrieta, Phillies reach three-year deal

The Phillies appear primed to add a legitimate ace to the top of their rotation, inking former Cy Young victor Jake Arrieta to a three-year deal worth $75 million, according to sources. The contract is for three years and $75 million, per USA Today.

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Jake Arrieta is reportedly heading to Philadelphia. It helped garner him a Cy Young award and a reputation as a big-game pitcher who gets better as the season progresses. The Phillies have long made it clear that length of deal is more of a concern with them than money.

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On March 1, MLB.com's Jon Morosi reported the Phillies have "entertained the possibility" to sign two free agent starting pitchers this offseason. During his successful career transformation with the Cubs, he was 68-31 with a 2.73 ERA in 128 career starts. If their young starters can take step forward this season, the Phillies could make waves in the wild card standings.

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The Phillies went 66-96 and finished last in the NL East, and haven't had a winning season since 2011. The club already surrendered their second-highest pick, plus $500,000 in global signing bonus money, when it signed Carlos Santana to a three-year, $60 million contract in December. Arrieta may have plenty of catching up to do since his new teammates have already been participating in spring training for quite a while now, but that's nothing the veteran isn't capable of handling. He struck out 163 batters in 168.33 innings pitched. Three-time batting champion Joe Mauer doubled, drew a bases-loaded walk and scored as the leadoff man for the Twins in a 6-5 win over the Rays. The Phillies weren't about to play in that realm, but they made it clear to Arrieta's representatives that they'd be open to something in the three-year range.

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