The Cardinals have agreed to sign right-handed starting pitcher Miles Mikolas to a two-year, $15.5 million deal, per multiple reports (Jeff Passan of Yahoo had it first). Mikolas, 29, previously spent parts of three seasons in the majors with the Padres and Rangers, but most recently rounded into a great starting pitcher in Japan's Nippon Professional Baseball. In his three seasons for the Yomiuri Giants, Mikolas went 31-13 with a 2.18 ERA and 0.99 WHIP. Last season, he pitched to a 2.25 ERA, 0.98 WHIP and 187 strikeouts against only 23 walks in 188 innings. In his time across the Pacific, Mikolas greatly increased his strikeout rate while cutting back on walks and did a very good job keeping the ball in the yard. Now, there are two big takeaways here. You can never have too much pitching depth The Cardinals have a veteran trio in their rotation of Carlos Martinez, Adam Wainwright and Michael Wacha. Alex Reyes is a youngster with huge upside, but he's coming off Tommy John surgery. Luke Weaver is heading into his age-24 season and looks to be a capable big-league starter. Jack Flaherty heads to his age-22 season and wasn't very good in the majors last year in six appearances, but he had a 2.18 ERA in 25 starts between Double-A and Triple-A last season. Big-time pitching prospect Sandy Alcantara isn't far away from the majors, either. I just named seven possibly-viable starting pitching options, so Mikolas makes eight. Of course, how many are sure things. Martinez is one. Past that, I'm not sure. You've got age concerns on Wainwright along with injury concerns for Wacha (history) and Reyes (just the rehab and timing).
Cardinals add rotation depth in a starting pitcher returning from playing in Japan
CBS Sports | Dec 5