New York Mets star Jacob deGrom’s name was thrown into the rumor mill on Saturday with possible links to a National League East rival.
The Mets pitcher signed a five-year, $137.5 million deal in 2019 and has proven to be one of the top pitchers in baseball for the last few years. But after three straight seasons of 30 or more starts from 2017 to 2019, he has only started 17 games between the pandemic-effected 2020 season and 2021. He has not pitched in 2022 because of injury. He hasn’t pitched in almost a year.
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DeGrom’s contract runs through the 2024 season but he could opt out after the 2022 season and the team could decline his option for 2024.
On Saturday, ESPN reported deGrom could be heading somewhere else in 2023 should he opt out.
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The “perception in some corners of the industry” is that the Atlanta Braves would be the favorites to land him if he leaves the Mets.
DeGrom said in March he plans to exercise his opt-out option but maintained it would be “really cool” to spend his entire career with the Mets.
“That’s the business side of baseball,” he said at the time. “As a player, you build in opt-outs — that’s the business side. But for me, I don’t want that to be any distraction.”
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The Mets have yet to see what deGrom could do in a rotation with Max Scherzer. But without him, the Mets have built a lead in the NL East.