Right-hander Mitch Keller and the Pittsburgh Pirates are in agreement on a five-year, $77 million contract extension, sources tell ESPN, locking up another young core player as they continue to try to return to the postseason for the first time in nearly a decade.

Keller, 27, had a breakout 2023 season in which he was All-Star for the first time and struck out 210 in a career-high 194.1 innings, anchoring a rotation in which he soon could be joined by Paul Skenes, the No. 1 pick in last year’s draft.

Keller, who was set to hit free agency after the 2025 season, is the third core member of the Pirates to receive an extension. Third baseman Ke’Bryan Hayes and outfielder Bryan Reynolds both signed deals in recent years that can go through at least the 2030 season.

A hard-throwing right-hander they chose in the second round out of an Iowa high school in 2014, Keller was a top prospect but struggled at the outset of his career. He turned it around in 2022 and turned into a workhorse in 2023, finishing fourth in the National League in innings pitched last season with a nearly 4-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio.