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Mets trade Justin Verlander back to Astros

  • / Updated:
  • Kyle Evans 

Justin Verlander’s time with the New York Mets is over after just four months.

The club sent the veteran right-hander back to the Houston Astros in exchange for outfield prospects Drew Gilbert (Astros’ No. 1 prospect) and Ryan Clifford (Astros’ No. 4 prospect). New York also sent cash to help get a better return.


Verlander, 40, came to the Mets in December on a two-year, $86.6 million contract after 5 1/2 years in Houston. His contract included a $35 million vesting option that becomes a player option if Verlander pitches at least 140 innings next season. Of the approximately $58 million Verlander is owed from now through 2024, New York will cover $35 million, MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reported. If Verlander’s 2025 option vests, the Mets will pay an additional $17.5 million ($52.5 million total), all of which will count against their Competitive Balance Tax.

Verlander is the fifth veteran player the Mets have traded away at the deadline, joining David Robertson, Mark Canha, Tommy Pham, and Max Scherzer.