Houston Astros agree to let Justin Verlander cash out with a record payday

Houston Astros pitcher Justin Verlander (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Houston Astros pitcher Justin Verlander (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) /

The Houston Astros have reportedly agreed to terms on a massive two-year extension for Justin Verlander. How much is it worth? Let’s take a look.

The Houston Astros just keep printing the money out, exuding loyalty for the men that helped them be as successful as they are today.  Earlier this week, the Houston Astros inked Alex Bregman to a five-year, $100 million extension, ensuring that he remains one of the many ubiquitous faces of the franchise for quite some time.

After the rumors surfacing about the Houston Astros eagerly wanting to sign Justin Verlander to a contract extension, the latest report indicates that both sides have agreed in principle, well before the end of Spring Training tomorrow.

According to FOX 26’s Mark Berman, the Houston Astros and Verlander have agreed upon a two-year, $66 million contract extension that will likely indicate that he will finish up his career as a member of the Houston Astros:

Heyman also added this:

These tidbits are certainly good to know and it certainly indicates the type of unselfish character Verlander has.  But for what it’s worth, this will likely be Verlander’s last massive payday as I’m positive that he’ll likely be riding off into the sunset when he turns 38-years-old at the end of this new pact.

These numbers are right in line with the report from MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart yesterday where the estimates where around $60 million for the extension.

Verlander will earn $28 million for 2019 and then will get a $5 million pay bump per season

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through 2021.  That’s a 15.1 percent pay increase per season year-over-year.

There’s no question that Verlander deserves this pay raise and I think the team will still be able to reap a hell of a lot of benefit for keeping him locked up for a bit longer.

All in all, the Houston Astros aren’t done yet and are not just settling for the World Series championship that they won just two seasons ago.  They’re ready to do battle once again to dethrone the Boston Red Sox and get themselves back on the top of the mantle.

All of these moves that the Houston Astros are making fall in lockstep with their “Take it Back” marketing slogan for this season and these guys are certainly primed for a elongated postseason run once again.

Verlander, 36, had one of the best seasons of his career in 2018.  He was runner up to Blake Snell in the AL Cy Young Award voting, was first in strikeouts (290), WHIP (0.90), situational wins saved (4.0), SO/BB (7.838), games started (34) and notched his first All-Star nomination since 2013.

If that doesn’t move the needle in terms of the Houston Astros — as well as us fans — to keep him around a bit longer, I don’t know what will.  I’m glad this deal got done and now Verlander can focus on just being great without the stigma of being a lame-duck pitcher on the staff.

Signed, sealed and delivered!

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Verlander posted a 16-9 record, a 2.52 ERA with a 2.78 FIP and 12.2 K/9 through 214.0 innings pitched last season.