Free agent reliever Liam Hendriks has signed with the Chicago White Sox:
Free-agent closer Liam Hendriks in agreement with White Sox, pending physical, sources tell me and @JRFegan.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 12, 2021
It’s quite the deal, too:
The details on Liam Hendriks' fascinating deal with the Chicago White Sox:— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) January 12, 2021
It is a three-year deal that will pay Hendriks $39M in those first three years. But both the buyout and fourth-year option salary are $15M, so Hendriks will receive $54M regardless of what White Sox do.
I’m going to step out on a limb here and call that “closer money.” And despite the previous uncertainty on Hendriks’ landing spot, he was already being drafted as an elite closer. His current NFBC ADP is pick 66, only about 10 picks after the top closer being selected (Josh Hader). It’s a steep price, but that’s the territory you’ll have to accept if you want the safety of one of the elite closers right now, given the uncertainty surrounding so many MLB bullpens.
Hendriks joins the newly acquired Lance Lynn and Adam Eaton in Chicago, as the White Sox appear to be all-in on the 2021 season after landing this year’s top free agent arm.