Strasburg opts out of remaining $100M contract

Washington Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg went 5-0 during the MLB Postseason and earned the World Series MVP award

Washington Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg went 5-0 during the MLB Postseason and earned the World Series MVP award

First lady Melania Trump, Washington Nationals infielder Ryan Zimmerman, and President Donald Trump arrive for an event to honor the 2019 World Series Champion Washington Nationals, on the South Lawn of the White House, Monday, Nov. 4, 2019, in Washington. Strasburg had four years and $100 million (reportedly $88 million in present value) remaining on the extension he signed with Washington in May 2016.

Pitcher Sean Doolittle told The Washington Post he would not attend Monday's ceremony, saying he strongly disagreed with Mr. Trump's "divisive rhetoric". According to MLB.com, Strasburg made the decision before Saturday's noon deadline but the Nationals and Strasburg's camp kept it quiet as both parties celebrated the team's first World Series championship. But he'll at least test the free-agent market, which will be highlighted pitching-wise by him and Gerrit Cole.

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Of the 25 players on Washington's World Series roster, 18 were in attendance. Strasburg has proven to be a big-game pitcher, yielding a 1.46 ERA in 55.1 career postseason innings. The likes of a Strasburg or a Cole would be just what the doctor ordered but the Jays would have to grossly overpay to get either across the border.

Because Strasburg opted out, the $30 million deferred from his 2019 salary becomes due in three $10 million payments on each July 1 from 2020-22.

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The team now must decide what to do with third baseman Anthony Rendon, who is a free agent after hitting 34 home runs, 44 doubles and a major league-best 126 RBIs this past season.

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