After much speculation on whether the Mets would finally make a move to fortify their starting rotation, they finally pushed the chips to the center of the table and acquired veteran lefty Jason Vargas on a two-year, $16 million deal with a third-year option that includes a buyout. That person also spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal was pending a physical and had not been announced. Working with current Mets pitching coach Dave Eiland during his time with the Kansas City Royals, Vargas received his first All-Star nod in 2017, leading the American League with 18 wins (18-11 record) with a 4.16 ERA.
This will be his second stint with the Mets, as he briefly played for the team in 2007 after being traded to NY from Miami.
Coming off a 70-92 season that followed consecutive playoff appearances, NY also signed reliever Anthony Swarzak to a $14 million, two-year contract in December.
Having just turned 35 on February 2, Vargas hasn't seen many suitors come around this winter despite coming off the best season of his career.
Jason Vargas of the Kansas City Royals delivers the ball against the White Sox on August 13, 2017, at Guaranteed Rate Field in Chicago. Robert Gsellman, Seth Lugo and Rafael Montero also provide insurance.
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The Royals didn't extend a qualifying offer to Vargas after the 2017 season, so they won't receive any compensation for Vargas signing with the Mets. It was Vargas' first full year back off Tommy John surgery, and he logged 180 innings for the season.
In his 12 seasons with the Royals, Mets, Marlins, Mariners and Angels, Vargas has a 85-81 record with a 4.17 ERA. He was selected to his first All-Star team last season, after posting a 2.62 ERA in the first half.
The left-hander made two starts for the Mets in 2007, going 0-1 with a 12.19 ERA.
With the Mets, Vargas would get $250,000 each for 160, 170, 180, 190, 200 and 210 innings pitched.