arms race breaks out al west signing degrom

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 Things are about to get spicy in the state of Texas.

In a free agency stunner, the Texas Rangers announced they have come to terms with pitcher Jacob DeGrom on a five-year, $185 million contract. Per ESPN’s Jeff Passan, the deal could escalate to $222 million with a conditional sixth-year option. The deal also includes a no-trade clause.

 The Texas Rangers finished 2021 with a record of 68-94, second to last in the AL West. The team’s last postseason appearance came following the 2016 season. The Rangers haven’t won more than 78 games in a season during its playoff drought.

Last offseason, the Rangers made a splash in free agency by agreeing to deals with Corey Seager and Marcus Semien. The move to acquire a two-time Cy Young award winner and arguably the best pitcher in baseball classifies as an even bigger splash.

DeGrom pitched his first nine seasons with the New York Mets, winning back-to-back Cy Youngs in 2018 and 2019. This past season, he started 11 games and went 5-4. He pitched 64.1 innings and had a 3.08 ERA. He had 102 strikeouts while issuing eight walks.

DeGrom suffered injuries that put a stop to his dominant 2021 season. He was shut down after a start on July 7, 2021 after going 7-2 in 15 starts while sporting a microscopic 1.08 ERA. (h/t CBS Sports) 

His first start of 2022 came on Aug. 2.

Texas watched division and state rivals the Houston Astros win their second World Series last month. The Astros built a dynasty during the years the Rangers were stuck in purgatory. Friday’s major signing of DeGrom shows how serious Texas is about becoming a power in its own right.

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