As discussed this morning, Cubs lefty Drew Smyly had the right to opt out of his deal today, but it was not expected that he would. And he hasn’t, per Jesse Rogers.
So Smyly returns to the Cubs on a deal that’ll pay him $10.5 million in 2024, with a $2.5 million buyout of a mutual option thereafter. He’ll get a chance to compete for a rotation spot in the spring, other moves pending, and would otherwise serve as swing depth in the bullpen.
Smyly’s 2023 season was about as mixed as you can get, with the highest of highs (remember the near perfect game?) and the lowest of lows (he had a mid-summer stretch where he gave up 17 homers in 10 games and 57.2 innings).
Overall, Smyly posted a 5.00 ERA with peripherals that more or less matched. He was used as a starter and a reliever, having much more success in the latter role (2.51 ERA, .216/.302/.373 opposing slash line). While you might not pay $13 million for him in free agency as a reliever, it’s a pretty nice fallback plan to have available. He might be really, really good in relief.