All-Star reliever Josh Hader ended up signing a record-setting deal with the Houston Astros.
The 2017 and 2022 World Series champions agreed to give Hader $95 million to pitch for them over the next five campaigns.
It’s an incredibly large contract.
However, the Astros weren’t the only teams interested in the excellent southpaw reliever.
The pitcher himself revealed some of his suitors, via Foul Territory on Twitter.
“‘There were a lot of teams that were competitive.’ Josh Hader says the @Dodgers and @Yankees were among the teams that had interest in him, but nothing really came from it,” they tweeted, with Hader’s quotes.
“There were a lot of teams that were competitive”
— Foul Territory (@FoulTerritoryTV) February 8, 2024
It’s not hard to imagine both the Yankees and Dodgers being interested in Hader: he is a career 2.50 ERA pitcher with an incredible, elite ability to miss bats.
However, it’s also easy to see why they weren’t the highest bidders.
Both of them were in on the Yoshinobu Yamamoto sweepstakes, with the Dodgers winning and paying him $325 million.
And the Yankees appear eager to go with cheaper alternatives in the bullpen; and might be saving funds for one last move in the rotation.
The Astros now have an elite trio of relievers to finish games: Hader, Ryan Pressly, and Bryan Abreu, plus other solid alternatives.
That bullpen will not be fun for opposing hitters.
The National League, and MLB as a whole, has to be thankful that Hader didn’t end up on the Dodgers.
They had virtually the perfect offseason: add Hader to the mix and it would have been absolutely glorious.
But he ended up on the Astros, who will be equally tough in the American League.