When it comes to right-hander Aaron Harang, ‘Thou shalt not covet’ is one commandment the Reds have chosen to ignore.
The Reds yesterday signed Harang to a four-year contract worth more than $36 million. The new deal virtually assures he’ll be a Red through the 2010 season with a club option for 2011.
Harang went 16-11 last season with a 3.76 ERA with a NL-leading 216 strikeouts and six complete games, becoming the first Reds pitcher to lead the league in both victories and strikeouts since Ewell “The Whip” Blackwell did it in 1947.
Fans frustrated with the Reds’ inactivity in the free-agent pitching market can take some solace in the club’s decision to reach into the coffers to retain Harang. It’s a move for the future, not the quick-fix strategy we’ve seen all too often.
“We couldn’t be more excited about getting a deal done,” said GM Wayne Krivsky at Tuesday's press conference at Great American Ball Park. “This sends a heck of a message to our fans and our players. It shows a commitment by ownership to step up and keep Aaron here for the foreseeable future.”