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Keller and the Pirates agree to a contract extension.

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According to multiple reports, the Pittsburgh Pirates have reached an agreement with pitcher Mitch Keller on a five-year, $77 million extension. Keller, who will turn 28 in April, would have become a free agent after the 2025 season.

Selected by the Pirates in the second round of the 2014 draft, Keller spent several years as a highly regarded prospect, often appearing on top 100 prospect lists. However, he faced challenges in translating his potential into performance, evident in his disappointing 6.17 ERA across 23 starts in 2021. Nevertheless, Keller has shown significant improvement since then, accumulating 4.9 bWAR over the past two seasons.

There has been a growing consensus that Keller is on an upward trajectory, leading to speculation that he could have been a target for the Rangers during the recent offseason. However, with this new contract in place, it seems Keller will remain with the Pirates, eliminating him as a potential acquisition target for other teams.

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