Tigers, Verlander agree to $80M dealJustin Verlander and the Detroit Tigers have agreed to an $80 million, five-year contract, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press.
By: By Larry Lage, AP Sports Writer, The Jamestown Sun
Justin Verlander and the Detroit Tigers have agreed to an $80 million, five-year contract, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press.
The person spoke on condition of anonymity Wednesday night because the deal had not been announced. The person said the contract could be completed as soon as Thursday.
Verlander won a career-high 19 games with a career-best 3.45 ERA last season. He is 65-43 with a 3.92 ERA in four full seasons with the Tigers.
The sides agreed to bypass salary arbitration. When figures were exchanged last month, Verlander asked for $9.5 million for next season and the team offered $6.9 million.
Verlander ended up securing a more lucrative contract than Felix Hernandez. The Seattle Mariners gave their ace a $78 million, five-year deal. Verlander turns 27 this month and Hernandez, who is 58-41 with a 3.45 ERA, will be 24 in April.
Verlander made $3,675,000 last season.
Detroit’s decision to keep Verlander with a long-term deal backs up the franchise’s claim that it is still committed to spending money to stay competitive.
The Tigers traded popular outfielder Curtis Granderson and All-Star pitcher Edwin Jackson for younger, cheaper players. They also let second baseman Placido Polanco along with relievers Fernando Rodney and Brandon Lyon leave in free agency.
Detroit did, though, instill some hope for this season when it landed closer Jose Valverde with a $14 million, two-year deal.
Even if the Tigers are done reshaping their roster, they’ll be able to appease at least some fans by keeping Verlander under contract for at least five more years. With the new deal, they won’t risk losing him in free agency after the 2011 season.