After winning the 2017 World Series with the Houston Astros, reliever Luke Gregerson has returned to where it all began–agreeing to a free agent contract with the St. Louis Cardinals.
Originally drafted by the Cardinals in 2006, Gregerson advanced to Springfield (AA) before he was traded to the San Diego Padres before the 2009 season to complete the deal for infielder Khalil Greene. He pitched five seasons for the Padres before spending 2014 on the Oakland A’s and the last three years with Houston.
Pending a physical, the two-year deal is for $11 million with a vesting option, per Ken Rosenthal of the Athletic, who was first to report the agreement.
In the post season, Gregerson made five scoreless appearances–stranding all four runners he inherited.
During the regular season, Gregerson led the Astros with 65 appearances. He allowed 62 hits, 31 runs, 20 walks, and 70 strikeouts in 61.0 innings pitched. Overall, Gregerson had a 4.57 ERA. But the Astros made a point to note he allowed a career high 6 runs in 0.1 of an inning on April 8th vs. Kansas City. Excluding that one appearance lowers his is ERA to 3.71 (25ER/60.2IP).
The numbers overall were up for Gregerson in 2017–his 1.344 WHIP was his highest since 2011. And after allowing 19 home runs combined over the four seasons prior, he gave up 13 last year.
According to BaseballReference.com, Gregerson was at his best last season in high leverage situations as he held batters to a .234 batting average (11-47). Nine of the thirteen home runs he allowed were in low leverage situations.
Gregerson has not pitched in Busch Stadium since 2011.
photo credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports