NEW YORK — After an historic season, Edwin Díaz has struck an equally historic deal to stay with the Mets.
Díaz and the Mets have agreed on a $102 million five-year contract that is the richest in history for a reliever, a source with knowledge of the deal told MLB.com. The contract, which is pending a physical, includes an opt-out after the 2025 season, a $20 million team option before 2028 and a full no-trade clause. It surpasses Aroldis Chapman’s just completed five-year $86 million pact with the Yankees as the largest for a reliever.
It also takes Díaz off the market just days before he would have been eligible to sign with a team. He was supposed to become a free agent for the first time in his career.
Díaz is coming off one of the most dominant seasons with a modern closing, an All-Star campaign that transformed the once rocky tale with the Mets.
Shortly after General Manager Brodie Van Wagenen took over Díaz and Robinson Canó in a polarizing deal in December 2018, Díaz debuted the most challenging season of his career, with seven saves, seven game losses and a 5.59 ERA in his first year in New York.
He recovered with stronger performances in 2020-21, but it wasn’t until last summer that he became one of the most popular relievers the Mets have employed. His strikeout rate of 17.1 strikeouts per nine innings was the second-highest in AL/NL history among pitchers with at least 30 innings, only behind Chapman’s 2014 campaign with the Reds.
Gradually, Díaz became a Citi Field phenomenon thanks to his entrance music, “Narco”, by Dutch DJ Blasterjaxx and his Australian partner, Timmy Trumpet. The pulsing rhythm accompanied Díaz as he rushed in from the bullpen, eventually spawning production elements including stadium lighting effects and a camera following him on his journey up the hill. The Mets’ broadcast partner, SNY, stopped advertising when Díaz was due to play the game.
Díaz, only 28 years old, is a two-time All-Star who has saved 205 games in seven seasons, including three with the Mariners and the last four with the Mets. He owns a career 2.93 ERA.
The Puerto Rico native was a third-round draft pick for the Mariners in 2012. His younger brother, Alexis, is coming off a breakout season for the Reds, and Edwin has said he’d love a chance to be in the same bullpen. throw like Alexis at some point in his career. Most teammates refer to Díaz by his nickname “Sugar,” which his childhood friends gave him because they thought he resembled the title character in the 2008 movie “Sugar.”
Díaz’s deal completes the first item of what should be a busy offseason for the Mets, who must rebuild their bullpen around him, while also filling in multiple rotation spots and potentially upgrading the attack.