Andy Martino, SNY.tv | Twitter |
Jacob deGrom and the Mets agreed to an historic one-year contract on Friday, avoiding salary arbitration with a one-year, $17 million deal, as SNY was first to report.
That contract represented the largest raise in arbitration history ($9.6 million), and a record salary for a third-time arbitration eligible pitcher. And it will certainly not hurt the chances that the player and team will agree on a long-term extension.
Prior to Friday's deadline for agreeing to a one-year deal or heading to a hearing, multiple sources estimated a deal would fall in the $14-$16 million range. By exceeding that, deGrom's agents at CAA, led by Jeff Berry, got a tremendous deal for their client. And just as important, the Mets made a strong gesture of goodwill toward their best player.
With no arbitration hearing looming, the pressure is off to agree to an extension by early March. But the Mets, who continue to say that extending deGrom is a priority, will see their window to do so shrink over time. If deGrom excels this season, he'll find himself one year away from free agency, and might be tempted to test the open market.
That's an issue for another day. With this historic agreement, both the Mets and deGrom can feel good about what all sides hope is an interim step, but an important one.