Verlander inks record deal to stay with Tigers

LAKELAND, Fla. — For Justin Verlander, $180 million was enough. No need to wait two seasons, become a free agent and find out how much baseball's biggest spenders would offer.

Detroit's pitching ace signed a seven-year contract, the richest deal for a pitcher in baseball history.

Verlander's deal broke the record for pitchers set just a month earlier when Seattle's Felix Hernandez agreed to a $175 million, seven-year contract.

The 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young Award winner had been signed through 2014 under an $80 million, five-year contract paying him $20 million in each of the next two seasons.

The new deal keeps those salaries and adds $140 million in guaranteed money: $28 million each season from 2015-19. It includes a $22 million option for 2020 that would become guaranteed if he finishes among the top five in 2019 Cy Young voting. The deal could be worth $202 million over eight seasons.

Verlander also has compiled a 19-win season and two each of 18 and 17.


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