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11 February 2018, 12:34 | Anna Jefferson
The Cubs finally got their man, signing right-handed pitcher Yu Darvish to a six-year deal worth a guaranteed $126 million, according to our Ken Rosenthal.
The deal nearly certainly signals the end of Arrieta's time with the Cubs, a successful run in the Windy City that included a Cy Young award.
The 31-year-old Darvish met with Cubs officials way back in December and the sides remained in contact while the right-hander listened to other potential suitors.
The Twins likely will sign or trade for at least one more starting pitcher before the end of spring training.
Cubs sources disputed earlier reports they were close to a deal, noting that while communication lines were open after their meeting, no progress had been made toward a conclusion. In 2016, they won their first World Series crown since 1908. The Japanese star is expected to take the rotation spot of Jake Arrieta, who became a free agent after a successful run in the Windy City. He has a career record of 56-42 with a 3.42 ERA, but is also five years removed from his best season, 2013.
The Cubs' rotation, already stacked up fairly well for the coming year, is now unquestionably one of the best in baseball, as Darvish joins fellow acquisition Tyler Chatwood in joining a strong group that includes Jon Lester, Jose Quintana, and Kyle Hendricks.
The deal for Darvish could help unlock the slow off-season across the sport.
The only worry for Chicago is Darvish's past history of injurie, s most notably the Tommy John Surgery he received in 2015. For one things, Darvish was famously awful in the World Series a year ago, and his two bad performances - whether they were because of a slider-proof baseball or because he was tipping his offspeed pitches - probably cost the Dodgers a World Series title. He began a year ago with Texas and was traded to the Dodgers in July, going a combined 10-12 with a 3.86 ERA.
The deal with Darvish came after the Cubs agreed to a minor league contract with Chris Gimenez, who regularly caught Darvish while they were in Texas and developed a trusted working relationship with the pitcher.
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