Felix Hernandez, Mariners agree to record contract

02/07/2013 3:49 PM ET
By Lou DiPietro

Felix Hernandez will be saying "Hello, Seattle" for at least seven more seasons.(AP)
It appears as if Felix Hernandez will rule as Seattle’s “King” for the remainder of the decade.

According to multiple reports, the Mariners are on the verge of signing Hernandez to a seven-year, $175 million contract extension. The deal, which would be the ninth-largest in Major League Baseball history, is expected to be finalized prior to Spring Training, according to USA Today’s Bob Nightengale.

Once the deal is signed, Hernandez would become the highest-paid pitcher in MLB history in terms of both total value and annual average value; the $175 million surpasses the $161 million CC Sabathia got from the Yankees prior to 2009, while the $25 million AAV is slightly higher than the $24.5 million Zack Greinke is averaging in the deal he signed with the Dodgers earlier this off-season.

Hernandez, 26, broke into the league in 2005 at age 19, and is 98-76 with a 3.22 ERA in 238 career starts. The four-time All-Star and 2010 AL Cy Young Award winner was 13-9 with a 3.06 ERA in 33 starts last season, marking the seventh straight year he has made at least 30 starts and pitched more than 190 innings.

The new contract will replace the five-year, $78 million deal Hernandez signed in January 2010, a deal which would have paid him $19.5 million in 2013 and $20 million in 2014.

Follow Lou DiPietro on Twitter: @LouDiPietroYES comments