Cardinals Pick Up John Lackey’s Major League-Minimum Contract Option

MLB: NLDS-Los Angeles Dodgers at St. Louis CardinalsST. LOUIS — The Cardinals have exercised their 2015 contract option on pitcher John Lackey, who will be paid the major league minimum.

The right-hander agreed to a five-year, $82.5 million contract with the Boston Red Sox in December 2009, but it contained a provision for a conditional team option at the minimum if he missed a season because of specified injury. Lackey did not pitch in 2012 after reconstructive elbow surgery.

The major league minimum next year will be $500,000, plus a cost-of-living adjustment to be determined Nov. 20, which is likely to be $9,000 to $10,000.

Lackey, who turned 36 on Oct. 23, was 14-10 with a 3.83 ERA last season with the Red Sox and Cardinals. He was 1-0 in two postseason starts for the National League Central champions.

The Cardinals acquired Lackey at the July 31 trade deadline in a deal that sent outfielder Allen Craig and pitcher Joe Kelly to Boston. Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak said Lackey’s contract option was a key to the trade.

Photo via Jeff Curry/USA TODAY Sports Images

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