Cardinals sign free-agent starting pitchers Kyle Gibson and Lance Lynn
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The St. Louis Cardinals filled a couple of holes in their starting rotation Tuesday by completing one-year contracts with free-agent right-handers Kyle Gibson and Lance Lynn.
The 36-year-old Gibson set career highs last season with 15 wins and 33 starts for AL East champion Baltimore. His deal with the Cardinals includes a club option for 2025.
Gibson, an All-Star in 2021 with Texas, was 15-9 with a 4.73 ERA and 157 strikeouts over 192 innings in his only season with the Orioles. He is 104-100 with a 4.54 ERA and 1,359 strikeouts in 11 major league seasons with Minnesota, Texas, Philadelphia and Baltimore.
He was selected by the Twins in the first round of the 2009 amateur draft out of Missouri and spent his first seven big league seasons with them.
St. Louis also finalized a one-year deal with Lynn that includes a team option for 2025, returning him to the club that drafted him.
Lynn, also 36, spent last season with the Chicago White Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers, finishing 13-11 with a 5.73 ERA that was nearly a full run higher than his previous career worst.
The two-time All-Star, who was third in 2021 AL Cy Young Award voting, pitched on World Series teams for St. Louis in 2011 and 2013. He went 72-47 with a 3.38 ERA for the Cardinals from 2011-17 and is 136-95 with a 3.74 ERA in 12 major league seasons. He’s also spent time with the Twins, Yankees and Rangers, and needs 11 innings to reach 2,000 for his career.
“We are excited to have Lance back with the Cardinals, he was a big part of our success when he was here,” President of Baseball Operations John Mozeliak said in a statement. “Lance brings a veteran mindset, built on durability, experience, and his ability to work a high volume of innings. His addition is an important piece as we continue assembling our rotation and roster for next season.”
Lynn allowed 44 home runs this year, the sixth-most in a season in MLB history. Then he served up four in one inning for the Dodgers against Arizona in the NL playoffs.
The Cardinals, who finished 71-91 for their worst record since 1990, were expected to pursue starting pitchers in free agency. Their rotation had a dismal 5.08 ERA last season, fifth-worst in the majors, and the only entrenched starters under contract for 2024 had been right-hander Miles Mikolas and lefty Steven Matz.