The Texas Rangers took a risk by signing Jacob deGrom to a five-year, $185 million contract in free agency. The contract includes a $37 million option for the 2028 MLB season. Now that deGrom is set to undergo Tommy John surgery and potentially miss the better part of two seasons, that option won't trigger without the Rangers' consent.
Jacob deGrom's contract could become a six-year, $222 million deal if the Rangers' pitcher hits certain milestones in the 2027 season. However, a clause in the contract turns that $37 million option into a team option if deGrom undergoes Tommy John surgery on his right elbow at any point from 2023-2026, according to The Associated Press. Because degrom's Tommy John surgery is scheduled for next week, the $37 million option for the 2028 season can't be triggered without the Rangers' approval.
The clause on deGrom's contract also notes that the $37 million option would become a team option if the two-time Cy Young winner suffered any right elbow or shoulder injury that put him on the injured list for 130 straight days during a season or 186 days in a row during any period of time.
What if deGrom didn't meet any of those injury stipulations? His $37 million option for the 2028 season would kick in if he pitched at least 160 innings in 2027 and was a top-five Cy Young finisher. There are other stipulations in the contract that could trigger a $30 million salary for 2028.
The Rangers made deGrom the third highest-paid pitcher in MLB in terms of average annual value. At $37 million per year, deGrom's contract is only dwarfed by the deals belonging to Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer. The New York Mets are paying both veterans $43.3 million per year.
The Mets didn't come close to matching the Rangers' five-year offer to deGrom in free agency.