In a surprising turn of events, Chris Bassitt has signed a 3-year $63 million contract with the Toronto Blue Jays, per Jeff Passan of ESPN.
BREAKING: Right-hander Chris Bassitt and the Toronto Blue Jays are in agreement on a three-year, $63 million contract, pending physical, sources familiar with the deal tell ESPN. Story on Toronto making a big move and adding to its rotation, free at ESPN: https://t.co/aoqDXD69gp
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) December 12, 2022
Bassitt has been one of the highly sought-after right-handed pitchers available as a free agent this off-season after a solid season with the New York Mets. Across 30 starts and 181.2 innings, Bassitt carried a 3.42 ERA with 167 strikeouts and a 113 ERA+. Pair all of that with a 6.6% walk rate, and you have a very viable option for the middle of your rotation.
Chris Bassitt’s Career
Chris Bassitt was drafted out of college by the Chicago White Sox in the 2011 MLB Draft. He made his Major League debut on August 30th, 2014, and appeared in six games, throwing 29.2 innings with 21 strikeouts, a 3.94 ERA, and a 96 ERA+. The White Sox traded him that off-season, along with Josh Phegley, Rangel Ravelo, and Marcus Semien to the Oakland Athletics for Jeff Samardzija and Michael Ynoa.
Bassitt was in Oakland through the 2021 season and during that time he appeared in 100 games, making 88 starts. He pitched 526 innings and carried a 3.44 ERA with 483 strikeouts and a 121 ERA+. He was often one of the very few bright spots on the more recent A’s teams, and in March of this year, he was traded to the Mets for J.T. Ginn and Adam Oller. This is Bassitt’s first time in free agency.
Bassitt will be joining a Toronto Blue Jays team that was in dire need of starting pitching help. According to MLB.com, their depth chart prior to the trade consisted of Alek Manoah, Kevin Gausman, Yusei Kikuchi, and Hyun Jin Ryu. With Bassitt now added to the mix, he will easily slot into the two, or even the three-hole in their rotation, giving them a very top-heavy rotation that will set them up nicely for any potential post-season runs they may have in their future.
Embed from Getty Images
Chris Bassitt, Josh Phegley, Rangel Ravelo, Marcus Semien, Jeff Samardzija, Michael Ynoa, J.T. Ginn, Adam Oller, Alek Manoah, Kevin Gausman, Yusei Kikuchi, Hyun Jin Ryu
Troy Brock, Site Manager
Troy Brock has been a fan of baseball for 15+ years. At the age of 29, he has made his way from writing blog posts on Medium to listicles for LWOSports, to now serving as one of the two site managers for the esteemed Last Word on Baseball.
A loving husband and a father of one, he spends the baseball off-season playing video games with his four-year-old son or watching reality television with his wife.