September 17, 2021

Rosenthal: Wheeler will be a $100 million man; the market for Bumgarner and Castellanos; more notes (The Athletic)

Oh, to be free-agent right-hander Zack Wheeler.

His stuff is elite. His career innings total is low. His recent durability is encouraging.

Any day now, he will be a $100 million man.

Wheeler, 29, has received at least one $100 million offer and will land a five-year deal in excess of that amount, according to major-league sources.

The White Sox, Twins, Reds, Rangers and Blue Jays are among the clubs pursuing Wheeler, who is the leading free-agent alternative to fellow right-handers Gerrit Cole and Stephen Strasburg even though his career ERA+ (ERA adjusted to park and league) is exactly league average.

A pitcher’s long-term health is difficult to predict. Teams craft narratives to justify whatever additions they make, believing what they want to believe. But the intense interest in Wheeler indicates that clubs view him as a No. 3 starter at worst, a No. 1 at best.

The White Sox can imagine him fronting a rotation with Lucas…

Click here to read the whole article at The Athletic