Martin Perez is coming back. He agreed to the qualifying offer the Rangers extended to him, meaning he will make $19.65 million in 2023.
It’s a one-year deal, which isn’t the multi-year deal most players seek. But it’s $19.65 million. He wasn’t going to get that per year in a multi-year deal. Plus, it’s a raise from the $4 million he got in 2023.
Perez said all along he wanted to stay in Texas. Now he is. Had he rejected the qualifying offer, he would have been saddled with having draft pick compensation on his back, which would have greatly reduced his value to other teams.
What a difference a season made. When Perez signed for the 2022 season, it was met with a collective groan. Why would they bring back a monumental failure like Perez? He was one more bad season away from being permanently bounced out of major league rotations.
But, somehow, he found the answer to what had been missing his entire career and posted a career year, going 12-8 with a sparkling 2.89 ERA, making his first ever All-Star appearance, and surprising the entire free world by having a stellar year from start to finish.
Now that he is back in the fold, along with Jon Gray and the newly signed Jake Odorizzi, the Rangers have three-fifths of a rotation.
The next two pieces, however, are really going to tell Rangers fans just how serious this team is about winning in 2023. Chris Young recently admitted that the asking price for the top end elite free agent pitchers the Rangers would covet is outrageously high, higher than even he expected. It would seem the Rangers are not the only team looking for pitching. The competition will be fierce.
This should be a fun next few months seeing how the Rangers fill in the two missing pieces to their rotation.
Getting Perez back was a good move.