After Max Scherzer turned down a contract offer from the Detroit Tigers that would have made him one of the seven highest-paid pitchers in baseball, the team threw their star pitcher under the bus with a statement and called off negotiations.
Scherzer, who will be one of the top free agents after the season, rejected a 6-year, $144 million contract according to Jon Morosi of Fox Sports.
Afterwards, the Tigers released a statement placing all the blame on Scherzer.
"The Detroit Tigers have made a substantial, long-term contract extension offer to Max Scherzer that would have placed him among the highest paid pitchers in baseball," the statement reads. "And the offer was rejected."
The statement went on to say that the team wants to focus on the season and that there will be no more in-season negotiations.
At $24 million per season, the offer was comparable to other deals signed by top pitchers in recent years and only four pitchers have a higher annual average on their current contracts.
However, the offer is still way behind the $32.2 million Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw will average over the same six years.
Even if it is ridiculous to think Scherzer deserves more than $24 million per season, it was a risky move on the part of the Tigers to make such a public statement and alienating one of their best players a week before the season starts.
The statement also makes it much more likely that Scherzer will be pitching for a different team in 2015.
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