How much is Michael Wacha’s contract worth with the San Diego Padres?



All you need to know about the details of Michael Wacha’s contract details with the San Diego Padres.

Michael Wacha
How much is Michael Wacha's contract worth with the San Diego Padres? 3

In the apparently never-ending arms race in the National League, the San Diego Padres signed pitcher Michael Wacha to a flexible deal, which makes it even more obvious that they have their sights set on winning the World Series in 2023 or else.

According to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, the right-handed starter will earn more than $24 million over the course of four years with player and team options, which will also save San Diego a bit of money in luxury taxes. The contract also includes player and team options. Given that Wacha recorded a solid 3.32 earned run average during his final season with the Boston Red Sox, his extended stay on the free-agent market came as a bit of a surprise.

An extremely productive summer for the Padres should be brought to a close by the astute eleventh-hour theft. Most notably, the club broke the hearts of many Boston residents and sent shockwaves through the baseball community when they agreed to a deal with shortstop Xander Bogaerts that was worth $280 million over 11 years. They also just signed the highly sought-after starting pitcher Yu Darvish to a long-term deal lately. With Fernando Tatis Jr.’s comeback, a team that was already stacked and had advanced to the National League Championship Series the previous season may emerge as one of the early favorites to win the World Series in 2023.

San Diego had been in the shadow of their “big brother,” the Los Angeles Dodgers, for a very long time. The Divisional Playoffs of 2022 was an enormous turning point for the organization, and they provided the supporters with a much-needed shot of exhilaration. That by itself was sufficient to make the year a prosperous one. They will now be held to the expectation that they expand upon it.

Padres bolster their pitching depth with the acquisition of Michael Wacha

The Padres had what seemed to be a complete rotation before this acquisition, but adding this player gives them some much-needed additional depth. The three starting pitchers for the front line are Joe Musgrove, Yu Darvish, and Blake Snell. The next four competitors are Wacha, Adrián Morejon, Seth Lugo, and Nick Martinez.

Joe Musgrove 4
How much is Michael Wacha's contract worth with the San Diego Padres? 4

Martinez was shifted from the starting rotation to the bullpen during the previous season and posted an ERA that was nearly two runs better in relief. Lugo hasn’t started a game since 2020, and during his career, he’s had an earned run average of 4.35 while starting, compared to 2.91 when coming out of the bullpen. Following Tommy John surgery, Morejón participated in 26 games during the previous season, all of which were in a relieving capacity.

This doesn’t mean that none of those three would be useful in the rotation over the course of an entire season, though. At least one of them, and possibly even two, has the potential to have seasons that are excellent enough to keep them on the roster.

Wacha, who was 31 at the time, had a tremendously strong comeback season in 2022. After seven seasons with the Cardinals, most of which were productive, Wacha pitched for the Mets in 2020 and the Rays in 2021. In those two seasons combined, he had a record of 4-9 and a 5.39 earned run average (ERA). However, Wacha finished the previous season with a record of 11-2 for the Red Sox. He had a 3.32 ERA (127 ERA+), a 1.12 WHIP, and 104 strikeouts in 127 1/3 innings pitched. It’s possible that he started throwing more sinkers, at the expense of his cutter and fastball, which contributed to the turn.

To put it another way, Wacha appears to be the obvious choice to take over as the number four starter, while the other three should compete against each other for the fifth starter position. Because of their depth at every position, the Padres are going to be the club that everyone should keep an eye on.

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