The St. Louis Cardinals have agreed to terms with free-agent pitcher Jake Westbrook on a two-year contract with a mutual option for 2013. St. Louis Cardinals Sr. Vice President/General Manager John Mozeliak made the announcement from the Major League Baseball General Managers Meetings in Orlando, Fla. on Tuesday evening.
"Having Jake signed is a great start to our off-season," said Mozeliak. "We witnessed first-hand last season what a terrific competitor he is and how well he fits in with our pitching staff."
Westbrook, 33, fashioned a 4-4 mark with a 3.48 ERA in 12 starts for the Cardinals this past season after being acquired in a three-team trade from Cleveland on July 31. He combined for 10 wins in 2010 with the Tribe and Cardinals and made 33 starts.
FoxSports.com's Ken Rosenthal reports the first two guaranteed years of the deal are worth $16.5 million in total with an additional $1 million if Westbrook wants to return for the third season but the Cardinals instead choose to buy their way out. The annual salaries are $8 million in 2011, and $8.5 million in both 2012 and 2013. Westbrook also receives full no-trade protection, reports Matthew Leach of MLB.com.
Westbrook led the team with a 3-1 mark and 2.92 ERA in September/October and posted quality starts in 9 of his 12 starting assignments for the Redbirds.
Westbrook's career mark is 73-75 with a 4.29 ERA in 233 games. The 6-3, 215-pound Athens, Ga. native won 14 games with a 3.38 ERA in 2004, earning selection the American League All-Star team. Westbrook was the 21st overall pick in the 1996 amateur draft by Colorado and was dealt to the Montreal Expos in 1997. He was traded to the New York Yankees in 1999 where he appeared in three games as a rookie, and less then a year later was traded to Cleveland in a four-player trade for David Justice.
Westbrook won 14 or more games over three consecutive seasons from 2004-06, including a career-high 15 wins in 2005 and 2006. He worked 200 or more innings in each of those three seasons as well.