ST. LOUIS — The Cardinals avoided arbitration with pitcher Lance Lynn Thursday, signing the 27-year-old to a three-year deal. Though the club did not release financial details, the contract is worth worth $22 million according to CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman.
Lynn gets $22M for 3 yrs. #STLCards— Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS) January 15, 2015
In a release announcing the contract, the team did not note any options attached to the contract, meaning the deal would not affect Lynn’s free agency. The right hander is first-year arbitration eligible, so a three-year deal buys up his remaining arbitration years, but would allow him to become a free agent on schedule in 2018.
“We are pleased to have reached this agreement with Lance,” GM John Mozeliak said in the realease. “His performance has led to much success for both he and the Cardinals organization, and we look forward to his continued growth as both a pitcher and team leader.”
Lynn was in a strong negotiating position this offseason, having already won 49 games in appearances over four years. Because of his call-up date, he amassed a resume a lot closer to a second-year arbitration-eligible player, already posting two 200-inning seasons.
He ranks third in the National League in wins since 2012, trailing only Adam Wainwright and Clayton Kershaw, and is one of only three pitchers in the majors to win 15 or more games in the last three seasons.
Had the club and Lynn’s camp not come to an agreement on a long-term contract, it was believed he could surpass the salary record for a first-time arbitration-eligible pitcher ($4.35 million).
Lynn has 59 quality starts on his resume, 24 of which came in 2014- his best season to date.