George Springer won’t be coming to Queens. The star middle fielder, seen by many because the jewel of this season’s free agent class, reached an settlement with the Toronto Blue Jays on Tuesday for a six-year, $150 million contract.
The deal, which is pending a bodily, was confirmed by an individual in baseball with data of the settlement who was not approved to talk publicly.
Springer, 30, is leaving the Houston Astros after seven seasons that included a World Sequence victory and a dishonest scandal. He was believed to be one of many prime targets for the Mets in an costly rebuild after the acquisition of the staff by Steven A. Cohen. Whereas the Mets have bucked a leaguewide development by being aggressive this low season — they traded for the superstar shortstop Francisco Lindor, and have signed a number of free brokers — they’ve to date resisted overpaying for the league’s high free brokers, a gaggle that features Springer and D.J. LeMahieu, who re-signed with the Yankees for $90 million over six years.
The transfer got here a day after the Mets fired their new general manager, Jared Porter, the previous Chicago Cubs government, after a report of harassment allegations in opposition to him.
In Springer, the Blue Jays get a power-hitting outfielder who defends nicely and has proven a capability to rise to the second within the postseason. He was as soon as the poster boy for a burgeoning dynasty in Houston, showing on a Sports activities Illustrated cowl in 2014 that correctly predicted the Astros would be World Series champions in 2017. Springer hit 5 house runs in that seven-game collection, and was named its most beneficial participant.
Whereas Springer has continued to provide, averaging just below 25 house runs a season in his time in Houston, his accomplishments, and the accomplishments of his staff, have been tarnished by a complicated sign-stealing scheme that resulted in a number of suspensions and firings — however didn’t result in punishments for any of the gamers concerned.
Now he heads to the Blue Jays, a youthful staff that broke a streak of three consecutive shedding seasons by going 32-28 within the pandemic-shorted 2020 season, shedding to the Tampa Bay Rays within the wild-card spherical. The $150 million contract is the biggest in franchise historical past, surpassing Vernon Wells, additionally a middle fielder, who signed for $126 million over seven years in 2006.
Springer hit 14 house runs with an on-base plus slugging share of .899 in 2020. These numbers have been in step with his profession averages however have been a step down from 2019 when he set profession highs with 39 homers and an O.P.S. of .974. He turns 31 in September and might be 36 on the finish of his new contract.
The Blue Jays can encompass Springer with loads of younger expertise, together with third baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr., shortstop Bo Bichette and proper fielder Teoscar Hernandez. The staff’s rotation is anchored by Hyun-jin Ryu, who signed a four-year, $80 million contract with Toronto final low season.
Toronto played its 2020 games in Buffalo due to journey restrictions. It has not but been introduced how the staff will deal with the 2021 season.
With Springer off the market, the highest free agent left is Trevor Bauer, a right-handed starter who received the 2020 Cy Young Award for the Cincinnati Reds. He’s anticipated to get high greenback — as is catcher J.T. Realmuto, who’s now not a goal of the Mets after the signing of James McCann. Most groups have to date held again spending after having claimed to have misplaced tens of millions on account of the pandemic. In response to The Related Press, simply 21 of 181 free brokers had finalized agreements getting into Tuesday.
Tyler Kepner contributed reporting.