Mikolas returns from Japan, agrees to deal with Cards

Reports: Cardinals Sign Pitcher Miles Mikolas From Japan

Reports: Cardinals Sign Pitcher Miles Mikolas From Japan

According to Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports, the Cardinals are nearing a multi-year agreement with free agent right-hander Miles Mikolas.

Both teams met with Stanton and his representatives last week in Los Angeles, and the Cardinals left the West Coast unsure if Stanton preferred it as a destination or could be swayed to the Midwest by the team the Cardinals have in mind for 2018 and beyond. Mikolas has become a journeyman around baseball; while he's been with the Padres and the Rangers in the majors, he was traded to the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for Alex Dickerson in 2013 before being traded to the Rangers in 2014 for Chris McGuiness.

Mikolas was errorless in his three years with the Giants, handling 92 chances flawlessly and he also belted a pair of home runs for Yomiuri. The increased depth could also allow some of the Cardinals' young starters more time to develop in the Minors or by pitching out of the bullpen. They now have more flexibility to deal one of their starters, should that help the organization execute a trade that addresses an additional need.

Expect Mikolas' strikeout rate to dip back in the States, though as a member of the National League he'll benefit in that department from facing pitchers rather than designated hitters.

After all, it's often the unknowns who provide us the most bang for the buck. Mikolas was then drafted by the San Diego Padres during the 2009 Junior Amateur Draft, where he was selected in the 7th round.

He arrived in Japan in 2015 and got off to a fantastic start, going 13-3 with a 1.92 ERA in his first year with the Giants. The most recent player to succeed in the majors after spending time in Japan is Eric Thames. The Cubs, Brewers and A's were also said to be interested. Mikolas, 29, is returning from Japan, agreeing to a $15.5 million, two-year contract with the Cardinals. "Miles was able to pitch in front of a sold out 40,000-seat stadium every night in the Tokyo Dome and getting that experience helped him grow his command". That drove up the price of signing him.

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