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HomeSportsAll-Star starter lands with Cardinals as MLB free agency heats up

All-Star starter lands with Cardinals as MLB free agency heats up

The St. Louis Cardinals agreed to a three-year deal with veteran starter Sonny Gray, the team announced on Monday, marking one of the first big contracts dished out in this year’s free agency period. 

Gray, entering his 12th season in MLB, reportedly reached a deal worth $75 million, per The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal. 

Gray joins Lance Lynn and Kyle Gibson as new faces in the Cardinals’ rotation, as both veterans signed one-year pacts to head to St. Louis. 

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“We were hoping to sign a couple of pitchers we knew we could count on for innings,” John Mozeliak, the Cardinals’ president of baseball operations, said during a news conference Monday, per ESPN. “And if we could accomplish that, we were hoping we could do something a little bigger, a little longer, and obviously that’s where Sonny fits in.”

Gray is coming off an All-Star season with the Minnesota Twins. It was his first nod with the team after previously being named to an All-Star team with the Oakland Athletics and Cincinnati Reds. 

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Gray pitched to the tune of a 2.79 ERA in 32 starts (184.0 innings) with 183 strikeouts to 55 walks. He only allowed eight total homers during the year, leading the American League with a 0.4 home run rate per nine innings. 

A key piece in the Twins winning the AL Central last season, Gray finds a new home with his fifth MLB franchise in the Cardinals. He broke out with the A’s before moving on to the New York Yankees, where he didn’t pan out in the Bronx. 

Gray’s career was teetering when he left New York, but he found his way again with Cincinnati, putting together an All-Star season in his first year with the Reds in 2019. He remained there for two more seasons before joining Minnesota in 2022. 

For his career (279 appearances with 270 starts), Gray owns a 3.47 ERA through 1,571 innings on the bump. 

The Cardinals were 24th in team ERA last season at 4.79, so the additions to their starting rotation has the hope things will turn around in that category after a brutal season where they finished 71-91, dead last in the NL Central. 

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