Jake Arrieta, Phillies Agree to Contract After 5 Years with Cubs

Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Arrieta spent close to five seasons with the Cubs, racking up a 68-31 record with 793 strikeouts and a Cy Young award. The deal is pending a physical, according to Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia.

Arrieta pitched fairly well even in a down season a year ago, posting a 14-10 record with a 3.53 ERA and 1.218 WHIP.

Although he threw for a 3.53 ERA and 1.22 WHIP in 2017, Arrieta averaged a 2.67 ERA and 1.03 WHIP over his last four seasons with the Cubs.

The Phillies have not confirmed the deal. Nick Pivetta, Ben Lively, Zach Eflin, and Mark Leiter are all battling for a rotation spot as well.

In Arrieta, the Phillies signed the offseason's most prized free agent. Not to mention, Philadelphia still needs to show their offense is capable of scoring more runs on a consistent basis, which was a major issue a majority of last season.

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The free-agent market developed slowly for Arrieta and most others this offseason. He became the odd man out with the Cubs after the team signed Yu Darvish to a long-term deal in February, then needed to wait until just weeks before the start of the season to secure a job.

The glaring weakness of the Phillies heading into spring training was their starting rotation. Arrieta hit the market in November reportedly seeking a deal that would push seven years and $180 to $200 million. Arrieta was so dominant that he finished in the Top 10 of the National League CY Young voting for three straight years (2004-2016).

Neither of those deals are cheap.

The Phillies were a surprise suitor for Arrieta, though his addition makes all the sense for the current state of this team. Answers will soon begin to unfold.

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