HOUSTON, Texas -- The MLBPA announced Justin Verlander, Mychal Givens, Tommy Pham and Jordan Lyles resolved options in their contract and are now free agents.
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Verlander opted out of the last year of his deal with the Houston Astros, which was due to pay him $25 million in 2023. The 39-year-old righty had one of the best seasons of his career in 2022, posting a 1.75 ERA and a 0.83 WHIP, striking out 185 batters in 175 innings over 28 starts for the World Champion Astros. His strong campaign made him a finalist for the Cy Young Award, which will be announced next Wednesday.
The decision to opt out immediately makes Verlander one of the best free-agent pitchers.
Givens hits the market after the Mets declined their end of a mutual option, a decision previously announced by Mets general manager Billy Eppler. Givens will collect a $1.25 million buyout and head into a free-agency. New York acquired Givens at the trade deadline from the Cubs, who signed him to a one-year, $5 million contract in the offseason. Givens had a strong first half with Chicago, posting a 2.26 ERA in 40 2/3 innings but struggled in Queens, with a 4.79 ERA in 20 2/3 innings for the Mets.
For Pham, the Red Sox declined their end of a $12 million mutual option for 2023, giving the outfielder a $1.5 million buyout and sending him into free-agency. Boston traded for Pham at the trade deadline, acquiring the 34-year-old outfielder from the Cincinnati Reds. In 622 plate appearances between the Red Sox and Reds, Pham hit .236/.312/.374.
Lyles becomes a free-agent after the Orioles declined the righty's $11 million club option for 2023, triggering a $1 million buyout. Baltimore signed Lyles to a one-year, $7 million contract in 2022 and in 32 starts, the righty posted a 4.42 ERA with 144 strikeouts in 179 innings, the most on the team.