It was reported earlier today that free agent pitcher Matt Garza had agreed to a four-year, $52 million deal with the Milwaukee Brewers, but it seems like there is all speculation at this point.
The Brewers organization declined to confirm the deal and said that the talks are still ongoing, so the agreement is not closed. Knowing how the MLB – and particularly the free agent period – works, this could mean only one thing, that the former Chicago Cubs pitcher failed his medical and now the Brewers are reluctant to sign him.
We have seen this before — even this year when the Baltimore Orioles declined to sign Grant Belfour after failing a medical exam despite the reports that his elbow and arm were in perfect conditions. There isn’t any news regarding what happened with the right-hander, but if the medical rumors is true, then his offseason stock will take a huge hit.
As things stand right now, Garza is one of the top pitchers still available, together with Erwin Santana, Bronson Arroyo and Ubaldo Jimenez. The health concerns have always existed with Garza and it is understandable that the Brewers are trying to clear everything before inking the deal, as they will be making a huge commitment in a contract that will be worth more than $50 million during the next four seasons.
One thing is certain, and that is that Garza can’t afford to fail a medical if he is looking to get paid before the season starts. He already had two injury-riddled seasons with the Cubs in 2012 and 2013, and another issue would only complicate his chances of landing a huge contract before Opening Day.