Dallas Keuchel did not have to wait around in free agency nearly as long this time around, as he agreed to a contract with the Chicago White Sox on Saturday, according to Jeff Passan of ESPN.
Jon Heyman of MLB Network reported Keuchel’s deal will be worth $55.5 million over three years, with a vesting option that could push the total value up to $74 million
The southpaw found himself in free-agent purgatory last offseason upon declining a qualifying offer from the Houston Astros. He did not find a home until June, when draft-pick compensation would no longer be tied to his signing.
He ultimately settled for a prorated one-year, $13 million deal with the Atlanta Braves. It turned out to be a quality signing for Atlanta. Keuchel helped the team acquire its second consecutive National League East title, going 8-8 with a 3.75 ERA and a 1.37 WHIP while striking out 91 batters in 112.2 innings. He allowed more than two earned runs in a start only twice in his final nine regular-season outings.
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He gave his team a chance to win in each of his two postseason starts versus the St. Louis Cardinals in the National League Division Series. He allowed one run in 4.2 innings in Game 1 and three runs in 3.1 innings in Game 4, receiving no-decisions each time. However, the Braves dropped both games en route to a five-game exit.
The 31-year-old may not be the same dominant pitcher he was when he won the 2015 American League Cy Young Award.
However, he went 14-5 with a 2.90 ERA only two years ago. And over the course of the past two seasons, he has continued to be a dependable arm.
With Stephen Strasburg, Gerrit Cole and Madison Bumgarner all signing during the first half of December, Keuchel found himself among the most coveted arms on the market as the offseason progressed.