Yovani Gallardo and the Orioles have agreed to a three-year contract worth $35 million, a source told MLB.com on Saturday. The deal, which was first reported by Jon Heyman of MLB Network, is said to include a $13 million option for 2019.
The signing, which has not been confirmed by the club, will require the O's to forfeit the 14th overall pick in this year's Draft, because Gallardo turned down a qualifying offer from the Rangers.
Gallardo's signing had been rumored for a couple of weeks and helps bring the Orioles' pitching staff into focus. The 29-year-old right-hander figures to slot into the front of the rotation. Chris Tillman. Miguel Gonzalez, Ubaldo Jimenez and Kevin Gausman -- in no particular order -- are the favorites to round out the starting five in Baltimore.
Over nine big league seasons, Gallardo has amassed 102 wins and a 3.66 ERA. He went 13-11 with a 3.42 ERA for Texas last year, but his declining strikeout rate was cause for concern among some potential suitors. In 2015, Gallardo set career lows in swing-and-miss percentage (6.5) and strikeouts per nine innings (5.9).
One of the sport's most durable pitchers over the past seven seasons, Gallardo has made at least 30 starts and thrown at least 180 innings every year since 2009. He also boasts a solid playoff resume, having gone 2-2 with a 2.32 ERA in three trips to the postseason (six appearances).
Fantasy spin | Fred Zinkie (@FredZinkieMLB)
Many fantasy owners avoided Gallardo in 2015, with the assumption that he would struggle in his first season in the Junior Circuit. Although he produced career worsts in K/9 rate (5.9) and WHIP (1.42) in '15, the right-hander managed to help deep-mixed-league squads by posting a personal-best full-season ERA (3.42). Now faced with the daunting task of overcoming hitter-friendly Camden Yards and handling the offensively-charged American League East, Gallardo -- who has fanned fewer than 147 batters in each of the past three seasons -- should start the season on waivers in standard leagues. Those in AL-only formats will be satisfied to roster the owner of seven consecutive 30-start seasons and a lifetime 111 ERA+.
AJ Cassavell is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @ajcassavell. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.