New Texas Ranger manager Bruce Bochy said he believes ex-Met Jacob deGrom's desire to play for a winning team led him to sign a five-year, $186 million deal with the AL West club.
Speaking Monday at the Winter Meetings in San Diego, Bochy said one of the main takeaways he got from a conversation with deGrom was "how committed he was to playing on a winner."
"I think he liked the fact that we are in a process of building a winning culture in Texas," Bochy said of deGrom. "A very humble man that he just wants to pitch. And a guy that also wants to be a good teammate that was excited to listen to what we had to offer."
He added that deGrom and his wife, Stacey, showed "a tremendous interest in what we had and the possibilities of what could happen with Texas baseball."
Bochy said he had a good Zoom meeting with deGrom before Thanksgiving and he felt good about their chances of signing him, but in any free-agent situation, you never know where a player might sign.
"[Rangers GM Chris Young] called me and said, 'You know, Jacob has a lot of interest in coming here.' And you're excited about that but you still don't know where it's gonna go," Bochy said. "And the next day he called me and starts talking and then he finally said, 'we got him. We got Jacob.'
"Euphoria hits at that point. I couldn't have been more thrilled, more excited that we were able to bring him here."
Bochy, who called deGrom "one of the best pitchers in the game," added that his addition leading their staff fills a big need and will make the Rangers "so much better."