Report: Nationals, Lester agree to 1-year, $5M deal
Joe Robbins / Getty Images Sport / Getty

The Washington Nationals and left-hander Jon Lester agreed to a one-year deal, a source told Mark Feinsand of MLB.com.

Lester's contract is for $5 million, but he'll only earn $2 million in 2021, according to Bob Nightengale of USA Today. The remaining $3 million will reportedly come in the form of a deferred signing bonus payable in 2023.

Lester went 77-44 with a 3.64 ERA and 1.25 WHIP over the last six seasons with the Chicago Cubs. The Cubs declined his $21-million option for 2021 in late October, opting instead to buy out the 37-year-old for $10 million.

The five-time All-Star is coming off a rough 2020 campaign where he posted a 5.16 ERA over 12 starts. However, he was occasionally excellent, allowing two runs or fewer in seven outings while allowing five or more in the other five.

Lester has also built a reputation as an excellent playoff pitcher. A three-time World Series champion, Lester owns a 2.51 ERA and 1.02 WHIP in 154 career postseason innings. He was also a key contributor when the Cubs won the 2016 World Series, earning NLCS MVP honors.

Lester joins a strong, veteran rotation that features Max Scherzer, Stephen Strasburg, and Patrick Corbin.

The Nationals have been quietly busy this offseason, already trading for slugging first baseman Josh Bell and inking outfielder Kyle Schwarber to a one-year contract.

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Report: Nationals, Lester agree to 1-year, $5M deal
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