Jake Arrieta: 'Eagles Success Has Made Philly Hungrier'

Wednesday, 14 Mar, 2018

Arrieta has a relatively low 1,161 major-league innings on his arm at age 32, but a drop-off in performance and a decline in velocity last season generated some concerns about his staying power. He struck out 163 in 1681/3 innings. Phillies president Andy MacPhail and general manager Matt Klentak worked for the Orioles when Arrieta pitched at Camden Yards. He ranks third among all NL starters with 13.5 FanGraphs wins above replacement over the past three seasons, trailing only Clayton Kershaw and Max Scherzer. The Phillies open the season on March 29 in Atlanta against the Braves.

The Phillies already have a lineup that has potential to be dynamic and a bullpen that could be formidable. Now the Phillies have added an ace to the rotation and have slid into the Wild Card contenders conversation.

Philadelphia appeared ready to begin the season with several question marks in a young rotation.

The Cubs won the World Series the following season, ending a 108-year championship drought.

Arrieta is confident a team that won only 66 games last year is poised to contend under first-year manager Gabe Kapler. The three-year length of the contract is extremely favorable to Philadelphia.

Arrieta earned $15,637,500 last year in a one-year contract and many had predicted a deal with more guaranteed years. "We're going to have conviction and we're going to fight and we're going to win". It's probably Philadelphia's biggest free-agent signing since the club signed pitcher Cliff Lee to a five-year, $120 million deal in 2010. Middleton said he thinks next year's free agents "would notice a lot" at what the Phillies did this offseason.

Hunter and Arrieta have been friends since their college days. Philadelphia had money to spend and needed a veteran pitcher.

Former Cub Jake Arrieta has written a love letter to Chicago, and he posted it on Twitter. In 2015, Arrieta posted a 22-6 record with a 1.77 ERA and won the NL Cy Young Award while averaging 94.6 miles per hour on the radar gun.

He threw an average of 187 innings per season the past four years for the Cubs. At the same time, the team, through the play of young building blocks such as starting pitcher Aaron Nola and slugger Rhys Hoskins, had gone 37-36 over their final 73 games, which the front office took as a signal the corner had been turned. Arrieta's enthusiasm resonated throughout the Phillies' spring complex before Tuesday's Grapefruit League game against the Tampa Bay Rays.