Cubs announce signing RHP Brandon Morrow to two-year contract with a club/vesting option for a third season
The Cubs made it official Tuesday night and announced signing right-handed reliever Brandon Morrow to a two-year contract that includes a club/vesting option for a third season (2020). The Cubs did not release the terms of Morrow’s contract. According to multiple reports, Morrow’s deal is for two years and $21 million. Morrow will make $9 million in 2018 and 2019. The club/vesting option for the 2020 season is for $12 million and includes a $3 million buyout.
Brandon Morrow, 33, went 6-0 with 10 holds, two saves and a 2.06 ERA (10 earned runs in 43 2/3 innings) in 45 relief appearances for the Los Angeles Dodgers last season. He posted a 0.92 WHIP and did not allow a home run in his 43.2 innings pitched. He walked only nine batters while fanning 50, an average of 1.9 walks and 10.3 strikeouts per nine innings. Morrow limited opponents to a .194 batting average, including a .125 mark by left-handed hitters and a .231 mark by right-handers, while his .454 opponents OPS was the lowest mark in the National League by any pitcher with at least 40 appearances.
Morrow saw action in 14 post-season games in 2017, including all seven games of the World Series, and posted no record and a 3.95 ERA (six earned runs in 13 2/3 innings). He became only the second pitcher in major league history to appear in seven World Series games, joining Oakland’s Darold Knowles in 1973.
Since moving to the National League in 2015, Morrow has gone 9-0 with 12 holds, two saves and a 2.23 ERA (23 earned runs in 92 2/3 innings) in 68 outings, all but five in relief.
Overall, Morrow is 51-43 with 35 holds, 18 saves and a 4.05 ERA (373 earned runs in 828 1/3 innings) in 299 major league appearances (113 starts, 186 relief outings) covering all or part of 11 seasons with the Seattle Mariners (2007-09), Toronto Blue Jays (2010-14), San Diego Padres (2015-16) and Dodgers (2017). He has a 3.13 ERA (64 earned runs in 184 innings) in his career as a reliever while he turned in a 4.32 ERA (309 earned runs in 644 1/3 innings) as a starter. Morrow set career highs with 11 wins, 30 starts and 203 strikeouts with Toronto in 2011, leading the American League with 10.2 strikeouts per nine innings.
Morrow was originally selected by the Mariners in the first round (fifth overall) of the 2006 Draft out of UC Berkeley.