Breaking: Zach Wheeler Becomes 4th-Highest Paid Pitcher Of All Time

The Philadelphia Phillies have a lot of big-money contracts on the roster, but now Zack Wheeler tops them all. The Phils have signed their rotation ace to a three-year, $126 million deal that makes him 4th-highest paid pitcher, by AAV, of all time.

At $42 million, Wheeler’s annual salary will be the highest ever for a Phillies player, and the highest annual salary for any contract extension ever.

Wheeler's extension will begin in 2025. This will be his final season on his original five-year, $118 million deal, signed with the team in free agency after the 2019 season, and before this extension, he would have been the No. 1 pitcher in free agency this fall.

Since coming to the Phillies for the 2020 season, his 3.06 ERA is ninth-best among all pitchers in baseball over the last four seasons. In addition, he's 4th in innings-pitched over that time, behind only Gerrit Cole, Sandy Alcantara, and Wheeler's rotation-mate, Aaron Nola. 

According to Matt Gelb of The Athletic, the short-term deal was agreeable for both sides, as sources tell him that Wheeler, 33, may not want to pitch beyond the 2027 season, at which time he'll be 37.

Photo: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports