Chris Archer returns to Rays for a one-year contract worth $ 6.5 million, compared


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The Tampa Bay Rays signed starting pitcher Chris Archer to a one-year, $ 6.5 million contract, according to Jeff Passan of ESPN. The deal is pending a physical. Archer, 32, has spent the last two seasons with the Pittsburgh Pirates, but did not pitch during the abridged 2020 campaign after undergoing surgery to relieve thoracic outlet syndrome.

The veteran right-hander will now return to the squad where he made his mark for the first time. Archer spent his first seven years in MLB with the Rays, posting an ERA of 3.69 (107 ERA +) and 1.23 WHIP with 1,146 strikeouts versus 347 steps in 1,063 innings. Archer at his best had one of the best sliders in the league and was a two-time All-Star with the Rays.

However, after being traded from Tampa to Pittsburgh for Austin Meadows, Tyler Glasnow and Shane Baz at the 2018 deadline, he struggled to hit a poor 4.92 and 1.40 WHIP average in 172 innings in 33. departures with the Pirates. Pittsburgh opted to pay Archer’s $ 250,000 buyout rather than take the 2021 $ 11 million club option after the 2020 season ends.

Archer missed the entire 2020 season with chest opening surgery, a procedure that derailed the careers of many pitchers, including former Mets All-Star Matt Harvey. Archer has been a bit of a forgotten free agent this offseason as it’s unclear what he has left to give on the mound, although the possibility of Archer posting a rebound season in 2021 remains. And, given that the Tampa organization is adept at getting the most out of their pitchers, a meeting with Archer could ultimately lead to success for both sides.

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