ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - The St. Louis Cardinals quest for pitching has begun and they begin that by bringing back a familiar face.
According to USA TODAY's Bob Nightengale, the Cardinals are set to reunite with Lance Lynn on a reportedly, one-year, $10 million deal with a $12 million club option in 2025 and $3 million in performance bonuses. The deal is pending a physical.
Lynn originally pitched for the Cardinals, being drafted by the team in the sixth round of the 2005 MLB Draft. Lynn pitched six years for the Cardinals, pitching a 3.38 ERA in 977.2 innings during his first stint with the Cardinals.
Heading into the offseason, starting pitching was a big need for the Cardinals, with Cardinals targeting pitchers who could generate swing-and-miss. Lynn was able to still generate swing and misses with a whiff rate of 28.7% and a strikeout rate of 23.6%, which were both above average, according to Baseball Savant.
However, despite good strikeout metrics, Lynn tremendously struggled in 2023, pitching a 5.73 ERA last year in 183.2 innings between stints with the Chicago White Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers.
Most of Lynn's struggles is attributed to allowing too much hard contact, with Lynn most notably allowing 44 home runs last year and being barreled at a 10.3% rate, the latter in the 13th percentile.
A reunion with Lynn makes sense on some front. While the need for three starting pitchers by the Cardinals is widely public, it was highly unlikely the Cardinals would've broken the bank and gone after the top three starting pitchers on the market. With their financial limits, a move for a starting pitcher on a one-year "prove-it" deal was very likely on the cards, with Lynn being that pitcher.
Lynn return to the franchise is only the start of the offseason for the Cardinals. While Lynn will fill up a starting spot likely, two open spots on the starting rotation remain. With names like Sonny Gray, Yoshinobu Yamamoto, Blake Snell still available in free agency, and likely Tyler Glasnow, Shane Bieber and Dylan Cease in the trade market, there are still plenty of options available for the Cardinals.
This story is breaking and more will be updated