Associate Sports Editor
The Philadelphia Phillies officially signed starting pitcher Jake Arrieta to a three-year, $75M deal last week, as reported by USA Today.
The acquisition caused the Phillies to lose a third-round draft pick.
NBC Sports Philadelphia’s Jim Salisbury wrote that signing Arrieta is in an indication that the rebuild is coming to an end and the Phillies will soon be contenders again.
Arrieta was a former National League Cy Young in 2015 where he won 22 games with the Chicago Cubs. The 32-year-old also posted a 1.77 ERA for his former team. He then won 16 games in 2016 in route to a World Championship with the Cubs.
The addition of Arrieta will compliment rising star Aaron Nola in the future. The former Cy Young Winner and World Series Champion will become a leader for this young Phillies rotation.
Other notable starters in the rotation include a variety of young returning names such as Jerad Eickhoff, and Vince Valesquez who are both expected to appear in the rotation to start the season.
A slight drop in velocity for Arrieta has been a minor setback in recent years. However, his fastball still reaches into the low to mid 90’s that will continue to produce Cy Young-like stats in 2018
There is no doubt about that the Phillies are a team that has struggled in the recent past. The recent signing of veteran first baseman Carlos Santana in addition to Arrieta will add experience to a young roster.
It is too early to tell the impact the Phillies will make on Major League Baseball this season. However, it goes without saying that Arrieta will bring both skill and experience to the Phillies rotation.
Opening Day is just eight days away and it will be interesting to see where Arrieta will fit into the rotation this season.