Right-hander Luis Severino and the New York Mets on Wednesday agreed to a one-year, $13 million contract, sources told ESPN, sending the longtime Yankees pitcher to a Mets team that plans to spend its winter upgrading a depleted rotation.
Severino, 29, had spent all of his eight-year career with the Yankees, including a rough 2023 in which he posted a 6.65 ERA over 89⅓ innings. Still, the free agent market has set the price of veteran starting pitchers at $10 million-plus per year -- and Severino's past success bought him slightly more.
Over his first seven seasons with the Yankees, Severino was highly effective when healthy. He threw 638 innings with a 3.39 ERA and 709 strikeouts against 181 walks. In his two full seasons, 2017 and 2018, he was one of the best pitchers in baseball, finishing third and ninth in Cy Young Award voting and throwing at least 190 innings each year.
Shoulder and lat injuries limited Severino to three starts in 2019, and he missed the 2020 season and most of 2021 after undergoing Tommy John surgery. He returned strong in 2022 with a 3.18 ERA over 19 starts and 102 innings.
The deal, which is pending a physical Thursday, includes $2 million in performance bonuses and allows Severino to reach free agency after the season. It's the first move of many to rebuild a Mets rotation that lost Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer to trades in July and, beyond Kodai Senga and Jose Quintana, has serious questions.
The Mets will be a strong bidder for Yoshinobu Yamamoto, the 25-year-old right-hander from Japan, whose deal is expected to be the second-highest of the winter. They could also pursue left-hander Jordan Montgomery, who will get well in excess of $100 million guaranteed. The Mets have been on the periphery of the Shohei Ohtani sweepstakes as well.
New York on Wednesday also reached a one-year, $2 million deal with utility infielder Joey Wendle, it was announced Thursday. He hit .212/.248/.306 in 297 at-bats with the Miami Marlins last season and is a .263/.312/.386 career hitter over eight seasons with the Marlins, Rays and Athletics.
Wendle, who turns 34 in April, was an All-Star in 2021 with the Rays. He's a strong defender and solid baserunner who has made at least 150 major league starts at shortstop, second base and third -- plus 13 more in left field.
The Mets also signed reliever Austin Adams to a split one-year contract that is not guaranteed. The right-hander went 0-1 with a 5.71 ERA in 24 appearances this year for the NL champion Arizona Diamondbacks before his season ended Aug. 1 because of a broken right ankle. He was sent outright to Triple-A Reno in early November and refused the assignment, choosing instead to become a free agent.
A slider specialist, Adams is 6-5 with a 4.17 ERA in 132 big league games over seven seasons with Washington, Seattle, San Diego and Arizona. He has 170 strikeouts and 75 walks in 114 1/3 innings.
Adams plunked 24 batters -- the most in a season by a major league pitcher since 1909 -- in just 52 2/3 innings while with the Padres in 2021.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.