Maeda signed a two-year, 24 million-dollar contract… If Ryu Hyun-jin decides, he will sign a multi-year contract? Boras laughs

Kenta Maeda, one of the best pitchers in the Japanese professional baseball, made headlines with his option contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers ahead of the 2016 season. The Dodgers couldn’t afford to trust Maeda’s elbow. Maeda, who had strong commitment to advance to the Major League, fulfilled his wish by signing a contract that pays less basic salary and receives more incentives instead.

Although he was not a top-rated pitcher in the league, he was recognized as a solid starting agent. He played 190 games (155 starts) in the seven seasons of the Major League, recording 65 wins and 49 losses with an ERA of 3.92. In 2020, right after he was traded to Minnesota, he had the advantage of ranking second in the American League Cy Young Award with 6 wins and 1 loss with an ERA of 2.70.

Maeda faced challenges, too. He fractured his elbow ligament during the 2021 season, and eventually had to undergo major reconstruction surgery (Tommy John Surgery) and rehabilitate for a long time. For this reason, Maeda will not play in 2022 as a player. After returning to the game this year, Maeda recorded six wins, eight losses and an ERA of 4.23 in 21 games (20 starts). He pitched 104 ⅓ innings. He proved that his elbow was not bad, but his performance was not good enough to make a big difference in the free agent market. 토토사이트

As a result, the size of Maeda’s contract drew a lot of attention. The treatment of a pitcher in his mid-30s who had just recovered from elbow surgery and with a 4.00 ERA could be regarded as a barometer to read the market’s demand for starters. There were rumors that he would return to Japan, but Maeda decided to listen to offers from major league teams. He also won a relatively successful contract.

Major U.S. media outlets reported on Monday (Korea time) that Maeda has signed a two-year, 24 million-dollar contract with Detroit. The deal is known as a two-year guarantee, and an official announcement is expected soon. Detroit, which has been struggling in the American League Central, was selected as a team that needs to strengthen its starting rotation as Eduardo Rodriguez, who led the team’s starting rotation this year, declared an opt-out (giving up remaining contracts and qualifying as an FA).

Maeda is not a special pitcher, but if he is healthy, he will be able to play early to mid-100 innings in 25 games. Maeda has had ups and downs this year, but he finished the season with a relatively stable pace at the end of the season. In Minnesota, where young starting pitchers are coming up, there was not a good place, but he is said to have dug into the niche well.

It is similar to veteran right-hander Lance Lynn, who recently signed a contract with St. Louis for a total of 25 million U.S. dollars for one-plus-one year. Maeda was born in 1988 and Lynn was born in 1987, which is similar in age. In the end, players at this level were proven to be able to sign one to two-year contracts that exceed 10 million dollars per year.

It is also a better treatment than previous local media expected. Local media usually offered a single year as Maeda’s expected contract. Many media expected a one-year contract of around 10 million U.S. dollars. However, Maeda has proved that demand for starters is quite high, as he earns an average of 12 million dollars per year at the same time as winning a two-year contract.

This also coincides with Scott Boras, Ryu’s agent and Maeda’s agent. “There is a lot of demand in the market for starters,” Boras said at a recent press conference during the Major League Baseball general manager’s meeting. If a pitcher can throw healthy, many teams are rushing in. This was a remark made with Ryu Hyun-jin (36), one of his customers in the FA market, in mind, but Lin and Maeda’s contract proved their expectations not wrong.

Ryu is one year older than Maeda. Players in their mid- to late 30s often have one-year differences. But they also have advantages over Maeda. He is a rarer left-hander in the market. And he has a better career than Maeda. The high point is 3.27, compared to Maeda’s 3.92 ERA in the Major League. The high point is also higher. The fact that a player in his mid-30s underwent elbow surgery was not a major obstacle to his contract was also confirmed in Maeda’s case. It also bodes well for Ryu.

Boras, who led Maeda’s contract, is expected to start negotiations based on the deal. Boras is certain to argue that Ryu Hyun-jin is as good as Maeda. Local media initially predicted that Ryu and Maeda were tied up at a similar level, but as Maeda signed the contract first, a good trend was created for Ryu as well. Ryu is said to be able to sign a multi-year contract of more than two years if he decides, and maybe raise the annual average amount and leave room for re-entry to the FA and return to the KBO League in the future. The market is definitely not bad.

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