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Posts Tagged ‘Arbitration’

Crunching the Numbers on Arby Offers

January 19, 2010 Leave a comment

[picapp align=”right” wrap=”true” link=”term=corey+hart&iid=5007345″ src=”0/2/f/5/Milwaukee_Brewers_at_fd5a.JPG?adImageId=9308851&imageId=5007345″ width=”234″ height=”337″ /]Here is what we know right now: Jody Gerut, Rickie Weeks, and Carlos Gomez have all avoided arbitration thanks to one-year deals totaling $5.85 million. As far as the four remaining arbitration-eligible players are concerned, Todd Coffey seems to be the furthest away from striking a deal, while Carlos Villanueva appears to be the closest.

Thanks to Tom Haudricourt, we know that Coffey is asking for $2.45 million, while the team offered him $1.7 million. The midpoint between these two figures is $2.075 million. A one-year, $2 million deal seems reasonable for a guy who was probably the second most valuable arm out of the bullpen behind Trevor Hoffman.

Corey Hart asked for $4.8 million while the club submitted a figure of $4.15 million. The midpoint there would be $4.475 million. To me, this seems to be the toughest case — Hart wants a raise of $1.55 million. In other words, he wants to be paid like his numbers didn’t decrease for a second consecutive season.

Dave Bush is asking for $4.45 million, while the club offered $4.125 million. The midpoint with Bush would be $4.2875 million, which seems like a reasonable enough number. While Bush fell out of favor with a lot of people last year, I still think he can be a very productive #4 pitcher — even a passable #3 — if he can stay healthy for a full season. While he struggled after being hit with a line drive last season, let’s not forget how dominating he can be when everything is clicking.

Finally, Villanueva wants to be labeled a millionaire for the first time, submitting a figure of $1.075 million. Given his struggles last year, the club is offering $800,000, placing the midpoint at $937,500. When all is said and done, I think Villa makes less than a million in 2010, but then again I couldn’t imagine Carlos Gomez’s salary making such a spike.

When you factor in what the Brewers have already committed to the three players who’ve signed, if the Brewers were to go to arbitration with each of the remaining four and lose, they’d pay a combined $18.625 million to the seven arby-eligibles. If they went to arbitration and won every case, they’d only be on the hook for $16.625 million. Considering Doug Melvin has said he’s anticipating arby cases to cost between $17 and $18 million, that could mean some extra money that could be spent luring Jarrod Washburn or Doug Davis to Milwaukee.

If the Brewers can agree to contracts with the remaining four at the midpoint amounts, they would pay a total of $17.625 million — pretty much right in the middle of Melvin’s estimation, which would mean he had a pretty good idea what each player would be asking for. Given Melvin’s history of avoiding arbitration hearings, I wouldn’t be surprised to hear about more signings in the next few days. It seems like only a matter of time before Villanueva and possibly Bush sign, but it could take longer to lock up Hart and Coffey, considering the large gaps between the figures presented.

It’s also important to remember that these contracts are not completely guaranteed — the Brewers could release any of these players in Spring Training and only be on the hook for a fraction of the salary — you may remember this happening to Claudio Vargas a couple springs ago, when it was clear that he wasn’t going to make the rotation out of camp and was due to make a starter’s salary. Why do I bring this up? Because something similar may happen to Bush if the Brewers find enough money in their budget to add another free agent pitcher, as the rumors seem to indicate they will. In that scenario, another option might be to option Manny Parra to Triple A, but the Brewers would free up a good amount of money by just letting Bush walk and keeping the much cheaper Parra in the majors.

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Weeks, Gomez Also Avoid Arby

January 19, 2010 Leave a comment

[picapp align=”right” wrap=”true” link=”term=rickie+weeks&iid=4699636″ src=”d/9/f/4/DiamondbacksBrewers_c871.JPG?adImageId=9301396&imageId=4699636″ width=”234″ height=”314″ /]Rickie Weeks and Carlos Gomez join Jody Gerut as players who have already avoided arbitration, agreeing to one year deals earlier today. The signings mean that only four arbitration-eligible players remain for the Brew Crew — Dave Bush, Todd Coffey, Carlos Villanueva, and Corey Hart.

Weeks will make $2.75 million in 2010, a $300,000 raise over last season’s salary. It could be argued that Weeks’ injury saved the Brewers a good chunk of change, because if he continued to play the way he did before his season-ending wrist injury, he’d be in line to make well over $3 million. In my arbitration guesses post, I had Weeks pegged for $3.5 million, so obviously I’m thrilled with this outcome. A healthy Rickie Weeks is a bargain for this price.

The contract details for Gomez are still unknown, but since he’s a first-year arby-eligible player as a Super Two and hasn’t put up eye-popping numbers, it’s probably safe to say he won’t be making over $1 million. The deal, like Weeks’, is for one year. In semi-related news, J.J. Hardy agreed to a one year deal with Minnesota for $5 million, so it’s possible that the Gomez-for-Hardy swap saved the Brewers enough money to possible sign another starting pitcher.

Tom Haudricourt seems to think that these two signings will be it for the day, but if there are more signings we’ll pass along the news (either here or via Twitter @BrewersBar). Doug Melvin was apparently planning on spending between $17 and $18 million on arbitration cases, and with 3 of the 7 under contract already, it appears they’ve only spent a little more than $5 million of that (depending on how much Gomez will make). Not too bad, even if we’re expecting Bush and Hart to make most of that budgeted money.

Update: Tom Haudricourt tweets that Gomez will make $1.1 million. Needless to say, that’s quite a bit more than I was expecting. It also means the Brewers have paid $5.85 million combined to Gerut, Weeks, and Gomez so far out of that $17-$18 million they’re planning to spend. TH also has the figures submitted by the team and remaining four players — Todd Coffey seems to be the furthest from reaching a deal.

Gerut Avoids Arby

January 18, 2010 Leave a comment

[picapp align=”right” wrap=”true” link=”term=jody+gerut&iid=5616624″ src=”c/a/7/9/NationalsBrewers_014c.JPG?adImageId=9219712&imageId=5616624″ width=”234″ height=”163″ /]While Brewers eligible for arbitration get ready to submit their demands tomorrow, there’s one that won’t have to. Outfielder Jody Gerut has avoided arbitration, signing a one-year deal (confirmation tweets from McCalvy and Haudricourt).

Gerut made $1,775,000 last season, hitting .236/.299/.373 in 177 plate appearances for the Brewers after being acquired via trade for Tony Gwynn. Gerut hit a bit better against righties, putting up a .245/.309/.395 line against them. While the numbers aren’t impressive, he did manage to finish the year strong after a slow start to his stint in Milwaukee. He figures to be the 4th outfielder this season, due to his ability to play every outfield position. As of now, his 2010 salary hasn’t been announced.

Gerut’s signing leaves six arbitration eligible players, and it’s good to see the Brewers take care of one of their “easy” cases early. I suspect it will be harder reaching deals with the likes of Corey Hart and Dave Bush, who have performed well in the past but didn’t live up to their salary last season (but will still likely be looking for raises). The Gerut signing keeps Doug Melvin’s streak of avoiding arbitration alive — since taking over as the team’s General Manager, he has never had to go to all the way to an arbitration hearing to decide a player’s salary.

Update: McCalvy reports that the contract is for $2 million (via Twitter). In my “Guessing the Arby Outcomes” post a couple days ago, my guess was for $2.2 million, so I was over by a couple hundred thousand. The $2 million figure for 2010 means he’s getting a $225,000 raise.

Guessing the Brewers’ Arby Outcomes

January 16, 2010 2 comments

[picapp align=”right” wrap=”true” link=”term=dave+bush+brewers&iid=6300132″ src=”6/3/1/d/Milwaukee_Brewers_vs_ea17.JPG?adImageId=9098488&imageId=6300132″ width=”234″ height=”288″ /]The Brewers’ seven arbitration-eligible players filed with the player’s union Friday — Adam McCalvy has the story at brewers.com. The players that will be looking for raises are Dave Bush, Todd Coffey, Carlos Villanueva, Rickie Weeks, Jody Gerut, Corey Hart, and Carlos Gomez. As McCalvy notes, this is the first year of arby eligibility for Villanueva and Gomez (Gomez qualifies for arby due to his Super Two status). The players will swap figures on Tuesday, according to McCalvy, and from there will have until the date of the hearing to iron out a contract.

Doug Melvin has never had to go to an arbitration meeting in his tenure as General Manager, and hopefully that trend continues this year. He won’t have to worry about working out a deal with Scott Boras for Prince Fielder this offseason, thanks to the two-year deal he got Fielder to sign last winter that locked in his 2010 salary. He will, however, have to deal with a couple of players that underachieved last season but will still be looking for raises anyway — here’s looking at you, Dave Bush and Corey Hart. Below is a table listing this year’s arby-eligible players and what they made last season, according to Cot’s Baseball Contracts.
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