The Houston Astros have signed closer Ryan Pressly to a two-year contract extension that covers 2023-24, according to an MLB.com report. The deal is worth $30 million guaranteed and includes a vesting option that can push the total value to $42 million. The Houston Chronicle says the option will vest with 50 appearances in both 2023 and 2024.
Pressly, 33, will earn $10 million in 2022 as part of the three-year, $20.4 million extension he signed in March 2019. That contract covered 2019-21 and included a $7 million club option for 2022. Escalators tied to appearances increased the salary to $10 million and fully guaranteed the option year. Pressly was an All-Star in 2019 and 2021.
The $15 million average annual value of the new extension makes Pressly one of the highest-paid relievers in the game. Here are the largest current reliever contracts by average annual value:
- Liam Hendriks, White Sox: $18 million
- Aroldis Chapman, Yankees: $16 million
- Kenley Jansen, Braves: $16 million
- Ryan Pressly, Astros: $15 million
- Raisel Iglesias, Angels: $14.5 million
Acquired from the Twins at the 2018 trade deadline, Pressly is a spin rate monster and he’s been one of the best relievers in baseball since arriving in Houston and making changes to his pitch usage. He owns a 2.21 ERA and has struck out a little more than one-third of the batters he’s faced with the Astros. Pressly took over as the team’s closer in 2020.
Even with Pressly now off the market, the upcoming free-agent class is loaded with quality relievers. Chapman and Jansen will be available, as will Dodgers closer Craig Kimbrel, Mets closer Edwin Díaz, and Yankees setup man Chad Green.
The Astros went 95-67 last season and won the AL West for the fourth consecutive 162-game season. Houston lost the World Series to the Braves in six games. Pressly has a career 3.58 ERA in the postseason.