Mets’ Jacob deGrom still likely to opt out; José Ramírez, Aaron Judge not close to extensions – The Athletic

As discouraging as the immediate future is for Mets right-hander Jacob deGrom, his long-term outlook, at least with regard to his contract, remains unchanged. As long as deGrom’s career is not in jeopardy, the structure of his deal makes it likely he will opt out at the end of the season.

The Mets announced on Friday that deGrom, 33, will not throw for up to four weeks because of a stress reaction on his scapula, or shoulder bone. At some point during that time period, additional images of the area will be taken, and the team will decide upon a further plan of care.

Yet, even if deGrom is cleared to resume throwing in a month, he will need time to build up his arm, and the Mets surely will handle him with extreme caution. An absence of at least two months, then, would appear to be a best-case scenario. And considering that injuries limited deGrom to only 15 starts last season, it probably is not reasonable to expect full health from him even after he returns.

Why, then, would opting out make sense? Because deGrom has only one more guaranteed year left on his contract, and of the $30.5 million he would be due, $12 million would be deferred. The Mets also hold a club option on him for the following season, valued at $32.5 million, with $15 million deferred.

In other words, deGrom only would need to beat the present-day value of his remaining guarantee on the open market. That will be entirely possible if he is reasonably healthy. When deGrom is on the mound, he is the best pitcher in the world. In his 15 starts last season, he had a 1.08 ERA.


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