UPDATE: The deal is done. And as expected, he’ll receive three years and an option for 2015.
According to Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times, Billingsley will be guaranteed at least $35 million from 2012-2014. If the Dodgers exercise the option for 2015, he could make as much as $46 million.
Billingsley will earn $9 million in 2012, $11 million in 2013, $12 million in 2014 and either a $14 million club option for 2015 or a $3 million buyout.
Monday, 8:00 PM: According to Jim Peltz of the Los Angeles Times, the Dodgers and Chad Billingsley have reached a tentative agreement on a three-year contract extension valued at more than $30 million.
Details aren’t yet available, but multiple sources tell Tony Jackson of ESPN Los Angeles that the deal will cover 2012-2014 with a possible option for 2015. If true, the contract would buy out his final year of arbitration and his first two years of free agency. Billingsley and the Dodgers avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $6.275 million contract in January.
Billingsley, 26, is 59-41 with a 3.55 ERA over his first five major league seasons, averaging 8.2 K/9 and 3.9 BB/9. The former 2003 first-round pick went 12-11 with a 3.57 ERA over 31 starts last season.
UPDATE: Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times reports that the contract is worth $35-36 million, including the buyout of the option year. He adds that the salary for the option year is still being negotiated.
The Cubs wrapped up a four-game series against the Reds at Wrigley Field on Thursday afternoon, suffering a 13-10 loss to split the set. They’ll match up again against the Reds next week for a three-game series in Cincinnati. That’s good news for Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant, because that means he’ll get to see Reds first baseman Joey Votto some more.
As CSN Chicago’s Patrick Mooney reports, Bryant has grown quite fond of Votto. Bryant has already won a World Series ring, a Rookie of the Year Award, and an MVP Award, but he still looks up to Votto. According to Bryant, Votto is “the best player ever.” He added, ““He’s my favorite player. I love watching him. I love talking to him, just picking his brain. He gets a lot of (heat) about his walks and working at-bats and some people want him to swing at more pitches. But, gosh, I mean, he does an unbelievable job. You know that he’s going to give you a great at-bat every time he goes up there. It’s definitely a guy that I look up to and I can learn from.”
Bryant said that Votto is “a future Hall of Famer, that’s for sure.”
Bryant also explained how his approach changed by watching Votto. He said that in his rookie season, he was “swinging at everything.” Votto, however, is “aggressive, but he’s not going to swing at a pitch until he wants it.”
Indeed, in Bryant’s rookie season, he struck out in nearly 31 percent of his 650 plate appearances. This season, he has struck out in only 19 percent of his PA. His walk rate has also increased by more than 2.5 percent since his rookie campaign. Compared to last year, Bryant is down in HR and RBI, but his average is the same, his on-base percentage is markedly better, and his slugging percentage is only down by a minute amount.
Diamondbacks second baseman Daniel Descalso hit his team’s third inside-the-park home run of the season during Thursday’s 4-0 win over the Astros. In the top of the fourth inning, with the score 1-0 and the bases empty, Descalso ripped a 1-0, 83 MPH change-up to right-center field. The ball caromed off the wall, heading towards left field, which sent center Jake Marisnick on the chase. Marisnick tried to pick up the ball with his glove, but dropped it, which sealed Descalso’s destiny for an inside-the-parker.
It had only been five days since the Diamondbacks’ last inside-the-park home run. David Peralta hit one against the Cubs on August 12. Ketel Marte legged out his club’s first ITPHR on July 26 against the Braves.
As ESPN Stats & Info notes, the Diamondbacks have three as a team, which is amazing because the other 29 teams have hit seven combined.