The Toronto Blue Jays have signed free agent Chris Bassitt to a 3-year, $63 million contract.
Toronto is coming off its second playoff appearance in three years, but it hasn’t won a postseason series since it advanced to the 2016 AL Championship Series. It was swept in the wild-card round in 2020 and again this year.
Bassitt, who will turn 34 in February, was among the most sought-after starters on the market and will receive the third highest per-year salary among free agent pitchers, behind Jacob deGrom and Justin Verlander.
Bassitt joins a rotation fronted by Alek Manoah and Kevin Gausman. The Blue Jays also have José Berríos and Yusei Kikuchi, and Hyun Jin Ryu could return at some point in 2023 after he missed the last part of the season because of an elbow injury.
The Blue Jays, who finished in second place in the wildly competitive American League East division, got swept in the wild-card series by the Seattle Mariners.
Bassitt became a free agent when he declined his $19 million option with the New York Mets, following rotation mates deGrom and Taijuan Walker into free agency.
Over eight major league seasons, Bassitt has a 46-34 record with a 3.45 ERA, along with 671 strikeouts and just 228 walks in 737⅓ innings pitched. He received Cy Young Award votes in the 2020 and 2021 seasons but set himself up best for free agency with the workhorse performance for the Mets in 2022.