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Gio Gonzalez’s 2018 option vests

Atlanta Braves v Washington Nationals Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

Nationals' pitcher Gio Gonzalez will be returning to D.C. next season after his $12-million option for the 2018 season vested on Tuesday night. Gonzalez's vesting option was contingent on the left-hander reaching 180 innings this season, which he surpassed in the loss to the Braves.

Gonzalez, who turns 32 next week, signed a five year extension worth $42 million during the 2011-2012 offseason that carried options for the 2017 and 2018 season. The Nationals picked up his option this season, and will automatically pick it up for next season.

Gonzalez has been very effective this season going 14-7 with a 2.68 ERA, 1.15 WHIP, and 171 strikeouts in 184.2 innings pitched. Along with Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg, the trio has been formidable this season and should be a force heading into the postseason.

The Nationals have already clinched the NL East as they will jockey for position in the postseason over the final two weeks of the season. The club is chasing its first NL Pennant, as they have historically underperformed in the playoffs over the past couple seasons.