Royals first baseman Billy Butler agreed to a four-year, $30 million contract extension with the Royals on Saturday morning. Now Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star has the financial breakdown of the deal.
Butler will make $3 million this year, $8 million in 2012, 2013 and 2014, then possibly $12.5 million on a club option for 2015. He was also given a $2 million signing bonus and will take a $1 million buyout if that 2015 option is not picked up.
It’s a well-crafted deal. Instead of offering Butler a contract that gets richer and richer after every passing arbitration season, the Royals are going to essentially pay him a flat rate from 2012-2014. That means a larger than normal payout next year, but it will help Kansas City stay flexible with their payroll throughout the course of the contract.
The Reds are probably wishing they had worked out a similar pact with Joey Votto, who was inked to a three-year, $38 million contract extension last week. He’ll be making $17 million in his final season under the new deal, which will probably hamstring the Cincinnati front office from adding any pieces in the winter of 2012-2013. Of course, Votto could basically push for whatever kind of pact he desired after winning National League MVP honors in 2010 with a dazzling 1.024 OPS.
Butler still has some work to do. He posted a strong .318/.388/.469 batting line in 2010, but he finished with just 15 home runs and 78 RBI. The hope is that his power numbers will take a big leap forward this year.
ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reported on Monday that the Angels have received inquiries from multiple teams concerning starter Hector Santiago. He adds that the club is willing to listen to offers. Jon Morosi of FOX Sports and MLB Network reports that the Marlins are among the teams that have inquired.
Santiago, 28, has pitched to a 4.32 ERA with 96 strikeouts and 47 walks in 110 1/3 innings. Sabermetric statistics such as FIP, xFIP, and SIERA think the lefty has pitched even worse than his ERA indicates however, pitting 2016 as his worst performance to date.
Santiago is earning $5 million this season and will enter his third and final year of arbitration eligibility going into 2017.
We also learned earlier that, in an effort to bolster their starting rotation, the Marlins have also shown interest in Wade Miley of the Mariners and Jeremy Hellickson of the Phillies.
The Rangers placed DH Prince Fielder on the disabled list last week due to more neck discomfort. On Friday, Fielder met with Dr. Drew Dossett, who performed spinal fusion surgery on Fielder in 2014 for a herniated disk in his neck. Dossett has recommended another procedure, so Fielder will undergo season-ending surgery this week, Jeff Wilson of the Fort-Worth Star Telegram reports.
Fielder was having a rough season, batting .212/.292/.334 with eight home runs and 44 RBI in 370 plate appearances. He played in only 42 games in 2014, but returned in 2015 looking more like his old self. Unfortunately, neck and back issues are notoriously difficult to fix. Hopefully, this upcoming procedure does the trick for Fielder.
Fielder is owed $24 million per season through 2020, with the Tigers paying $6 million of it per season.