Justin Verlander turns 40 in February, but he's coming off his third Cy Young Award after posting a 1.75 ERA in 175 innings for the Astros in 2022. So despite his age, he figures to command a pretty hefty contract in free agency this offseason.
The Dodgers, of course, are in the market for a starting pitcher, so they have understandably been linked to the nine-time All-Star. Verlander doesn't have a qualifying offer attached to him, so he would only cost cash, not draft picks or international bonus money.
MLB insider Jon Heyman was on the radio in Chicago on Tuesday and was asked about Verlander.
“I would think it’d be back in Houston but they have seven good starters. … You know the Yankees tried for him last year, and they had gotten word through some high ranking political people that he’d like to go to New York. … I know the Mets have talked to Verlander and I don’t know if it’s been reported but the Yankees have again, trying with Verlander. …
“But Verlander, you know, obviously he’s going to be a lot of money, he wants the Scherzer deal, so it limits it to maybe San Francisco, LA, Houston and the New York teams.”
"The Scherzer deal" Heyman refers to is the contract Max Scherzer signed with the Mets last offseason for three years and $130 million. Of course, Scherzer was 37 when he signed his deal, not 40, and Heyman's "source" on this is Astros owner Jim Crane saying it publicly earlier this month. In fact, there's not a lot of "insider" information here — it's just a guy repeating public information and then saying, "He wants a lot of money, so it will probably be a team with a lot of money that signs him."
Thanks, Captain Obvious!