For the first time in his professional career, Jacob deGrom is a free agent. Despite the New York Mets being the odds-on favorite to re-sign the right-hander, he will have many suitors. The futures chances for deGrom’s next club are listed below.
Major League Baseball’s free agency market is expected to be quite active this offseason. There is an abundance of high-caliber players available in free agency right now, and among pitchers, Jacob deGrom stands head and shoulders above the competition.
Not many people will be interested in him because of his price, but it doesn’t mean they won’t try. The two-time Cy Young winner will be able to choose from a wide variety of teams, and it’s possible that he’ll return to his lone professional team, the New York Mets.
View the current OKBET Baseball MLB odds for the teams with the best chance of signing deGrom.
Jacob deGrom next team odds
|Odds to land Jacob deGrom
|New York Mets
|New York Yankees
|Los Angeles Dodgers
|Boston Red Sox
|St. Louis Cardinals
|San Francisco Giants
|San Diego Padres
|Los Angeles Angels
|Tampa Bay Rays
|All other teams
The situation at a glance
When fully recovered from injuries, Jacob deGrom is unrivaled as a pitcher. Not much room for argument exists here. DeGrom is 82-57 with a 2.52 ERA, 1.00 WHIP, and 1,607 strikeouts in 1,326 innings (10.91 K/9) across parts of nine seasons, all with the Mets. He has won the National League Rookie of the Year award four times and the National League Cy Young Award in 2018 and 2019. (admittedly, this feels low).
In particular, his 2018 performance is among the greatest by a pitcher in recent memory. Despite a 1.70 ERA during 217 innings of work, he was only able to win 10 games for the Mets owing to almost no run support from the team’s offense.
The notion that the 34-year-old is perpetually unwell is, however, a recent addition to the storyline around him. In July of 2021, he was placed on the IL due to persistent forearm discomfort. After experiencing a stress response in his right shoulder during spring training, deGrom would not be able to pitch again until August 2022 due to elbow inflammation. While the injuries are certainly cause for alarm, they should not be seen as a predictor of future events. He was reinstated, and in 64 1/3 innings he still managed a 3.08 ERA (2.13 FIP, 1.54 xFIP).
In the end, deGrom didn’t seem worried enough to exercise his player option to leave his deal at $30.5 million for 2023.
Favorites to land Jacob deGrom
New York Mets | -130
Last winter, the Mets inked right-handed pitcher Max Scherzer to a two-year, $86.67 million contract with a $43.3 million player option for 2024. As a result, this duo was anticipated to become one of the most potent one-two punches in a starting rotation throughout baseball’s history. Unfortunately, deGrom was sidelined for over half the season, while Scherzer also experienced his own injury woes. There’s a chance that one glance may be enough to terminate that connection for good.
Is it possible that deGrom’s decision to leave was influenced by the Scherzer trade? Is it possible that he was inspired to take a chance on the job market after hearing that one of his senior colleagues had been offered a larger income than he was promised for the upcoming year? Likely, the situation was less contentious than that makes it sound, but it’s clear that the best pitcher in MLB could also be paid like it (not that his $30.5-million option was anything to sneeze at). Also, the possibility that his ailments are behind him may make him want to lock himself into a longer contract with a somewhat lower average yearly value (AAV).
Despite the luxury tax, the Mets can afford him because of their owner, Steve Cohen, who has significant funds. Chris Bassitt and Taijuan Walker are also free agents, so the Mets suddenly need pitching help after having excellent depth in 2022. The Mets may also potentially go for Aaron Judge, but they have Francisco Lindor, Pete Alonso, and others still on the roster who can provide runs, so deGrom is the more pressing need.
Atlanta Braves | +330
Mets supporters would have a hard time accepting deGrom’s departure for the division rival Atlanta Braves, especially after the Braves stole the division title from the Mets in the nick of time. And just think of how dominant of a starting five they’d have with deGrom, Max Fried, Spencer Strider, Kyle Wright, and Charlie Morton if this came to materialize, and that’s before we even talk about the possibility of the long-injured right-hander Mike Soroka making his way back onto the mound.
Still, the Braves might not have as much of a hand in the deGrom sweepstakes as many assume. According to a recent article by Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, the Braves are unlikely to sign the experienced pitcher because of their impending wage commitments to the rest of their young talents. The Mets already have a plethora of great starting pitchers, so adding deGrom may be seen as an unnecessary luxury.
If he doesn’t re-sign in Queens, the Braves are still the favorites to sign him, but there may be good reason to not take that bet.
New York Yankees | +550
Although it would be fantastic if deGrom were to team up with Gerrit Cole, the possibilities of that happening are rather low, and the partnership appears unlikely. The New York Yankees, for one, will do all in their financial ability to re-sign Aaron Judge.
Can the Yankees realistically hope to have three players earning approximately $30 million per season with Cole already under contract for $324 million over the course of his deal and Judge potentially bringing in north of $300 million should he re-sign? While the Steinbrenners certainly have the financial wherewithal to cover such an expense, nothing has happened recently to indicate that they actually intend to do so.
Even if the Yankees may become a player for deGrom if Judge leaves, the Bombers will need to bolster their attack immediately.
Los Angeles Dodgers | +800
Unlike the Braves or Yankees, this situation really seems interesting. They would have a fantastic 1-2 punch in the rotation, similar to what was anticipated from deGrom and Scherzer in Queens, with Clayton Kershaw returning for another season. Even though Julio Urias, Tony Gonsolin, Dustin May, and Ryan Pepiot are still on the roster for the Los Angeles Dodgers, they may look to make a move for deGrom as an improvement.
Once Walker Buehler makes his comeback from Tommy John surgery in 2024, the Dodgers’ rotation would be complete with deGrom and Buehler.
Both Trea Turner’s impending free agency departure and the potential non-tender of outfielder Cody Bellinger would result in a reduction of payroll costs. Consequently, deGrom can reach Chavez Ravine through a feasible route.