Sports

Yu Darvish inks 6-year, $126M deal with the Cubs

Yu Darvish inks 6-year, $126M deal with the Cubs”

According to the Cubs have agreed to a six-year contract with starting pitcher. There is an opt-out clause included in the contract, and performance clauses can push the deal up to $150 million. The Japanese ace is coming off a season in which he tallied a 10-12 record with a 3.86 ERA for the Texas Rangers and Los Angeles Dodgers.

This signing is exactly what the Cubs needed to do to beef up their roster, and the inclusion of Darvish should help the team navigate through what has become a much more interesting NL Central division.

With Darvish in the mix, the Cubs rotation now consists of Jon Lester, Kyle Hendricks, Jose Quintana and Tyler Chatwood. Assuming he recovers from an apparent pitch-tipping issue which led to a pair of poor outings in the World Series, he should be a dominant pitcher in Chicago.

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Darvish's deal came less than a week before the Cubs were set to begin spring training. Darvish started 164 games, was 93-38, had an ERA of 1.99, threw 55 complete games (18 shutouts), pitched 1268.1 innings, and had 1,250 strikeouts.

Darvish went 4-3 with a 3.44 ERA in nine starts with the Dodgers down the stretch. Los Angeles is committed to staying under the luxury tax threshold this year.

The Cubs, who have been bolstering the team in the offseason as they aim for their first World Series championship in two years, reached the playoffs for the third consecutive year last season but lost to the Dodgers in the National League Championship Series. In the Cubs' case that draft pick compensation didn't matter with re-signing Arrieta, though it may have been a factor in their decision to not pursue him very hard.

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Most rumblings had Epstein more interested in pursuing a younger, less expensive starter who was under team control for two or more seasons, like Tampa Bay's Chris Archer or Toronto's Marcus Stroman.

If pitchers like Lance Lynn and Alex Cobb were going to cost $20 million per season (the market probably won't yield that kind of deal for them now), the Cubs figured it was worth paying just a bit more to get Darvish. In 2017, Darvish did make 31 starts and throw 186 2/3 innings, his highest totals since 2013.

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