The St. Louis Cardinals will exercise Jaime Garcia's 2016 team option, Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.
Garcia will make $11.5 million next season. If the Cardinals declined the option, they would have had to pay a $500,000 buyout. By exercising this option, the Cardinals now have a $12 million team option for 2017, again with a $500,000 buyout.
The 29-year-old Garcia proved his worth this past season. After not making 20+ starts since 2012 due to injuries, Garcia went out and pitched 129 2/3 innings with a 2.43 ERA and 3.00 FIP, as well as a 97 to 30 strikeout-to-walk ratio in exactly 20 outings.
Garcia has had trouble staying healthy over the course of his career, having a lot of issues with his shoulder in recent years, including shoulder surgery in 2013. When he is on the field, he has been good, posting a career 3.31 ERA in seven years.
With Garcia's option being exercised, the Cardinals now have $103.5 million in guaranteed contracts out to nine players for the 2016 season. Baseball-Reference estimates their total payroll to be $145.8 million, which would be a slight increase from this season.