No Giants reunion as Rodón, Yankees reportedly agree to deal


Carlos Rodón was a somewhat risky replacement for Kevin Gausman by the Giants. Now, like Gausman, Rodón has also found his riches in the American League East. 

After one of the most dominant seasons by a starting pitcher in Giants history, Rodón has agreed to a six-year deal, $162 million contract with the New York Yankees, the New York Post's Jon Heyman first reported Thursday night.

Rodón will join Aaron Judge, who returned to the Yankees last week under the assumption that New York would build a better roster around him. 

The move leaves the Giants without their best pitcher from 2022, but that was not unexpected. They have preferred shorter contracts for starting pitchers and moved to fill Rodón's spot over the last week by signing Ross Stripling and agreeing to a contract with Sean Manaea. Both pitchers got two-year, $25 million deals. 

The Giants might be better than anyone at getting the most out of starting pitchers, but they will have a difficult time replacing Rodón's production. In 31 starts, he posted a 2.88 ERA and 2.25 FIP, which led MLB. He also led the Majors in strikeouts-per-nine and finished with 237 overall, the second-most by a Giants lefty in the last 100 years. 

Rodón set a franchise record by throwing 11 double-digit strikeout games, and he finished the season ranked second among all MLB pitchers in FanGraphs' version of Wins Above Replacement. He was an All-Star for a second consecutive season and finished sixth in NL Cy Young Award voting. 

Rodón gave the Giants more than they could have hoped for when they signed him to a two-year, $44 million deal after the lockout ended. It ended up being one of the steals of the offseason, but to get Rodón to San Francisco, the Giants had to include an opt-out after the first season. Rodón stayed healthy and opting out was an easy decision, as he pitched his way to the top of the market in 2022. 

Teammates did not expect Rodón to return once he hit the open market, but the Giants did keep in touch over the last month. Ultimately, like Gausman, Rodón found others much more willing to pay the price. A year after Gausman signed with the Toronto Blue Jays for five years and $110 million, Rodón and his agent, Scott Boras, initially sought deals for six or seven years in excess of $30 million per season. They settled at a slightly lower price. 

The Giants will move forward with a group that has less upside because of Rodón's departure, but solid depth. Logan Webb once again lines up as the Opening Day starter, with Alex Cobb, Ross Stripling, Alex Wood, Anthony DeSclafani and Sean Manaea filling in the other spots in some order. The Giants currently have six options, although they are unsure what kind of workload DeSclafani will be able to take on after ankle surgery.

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The group should be one of the better ones in the National League if the Giants can fix their defensive issues -- Carlos Correa will go a long way toward doing that -- but for the first time since Webb burst onto the scene, there is no obvious co-ace. With defensive help, Cobb could be a strong No. 2, and Stripling is coming off a good season.

The long-term answer, though, may be another hard-throwing lefty. Top prospect Kyle Harrison will start the season in Triple-A and the Giants expect him to debut relatively quickly.

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