Jonathan Papelbon’s four-year contract with the Phillies is now official, as the team announced the deal along with one little twist: He’ll get $50,000,058.
That extra 58 bucks matches his uniform number, which he’ll apparently be taking from new bullpen-mate Antonio Bastardo.
Papelbon’s contract also includes a $13 million option for 2016 that vests if he has 55 games finished in 2015 or a total of 100 games finished between 2014 and 2015. In other words, if he stays healthy and remains a closer it would become a five-year, $63 million deal. Wow.
Philadelphia gives up its first-round pick to sign Papelbon away from Boston, but the Phillies will likely get another team’s first-rounder (and a supplemental first-rounder) when Ryan Madson signs elsewhere.
Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.
Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.
Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.
Reds reliever Raisel Iglesias hasn’t appeared in a Grapefruit League game since March 14 and now we know why. He injured his right elbow and both hips falling in the shower three weeks ago, Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. He has had anti-inflammatory shots applied in both areas and he’ll be be shut down from pitching for a few more days.
Iglesias might not be ready for Opening Day, according to manager Bryan Price. Iglesias, however, thinks otherwise. He said, “I’m going to be OK. I’m probably going to throw one bullpen, and after that, mentally and physically, I’ll be ready to join the season and compete.”
Price said throughout the offseason that he intended to pick his closer according to the matchups rather than naming one official closer. As a result, this injury likely doesn’t change much except that Michael Lorenzen, Drew Storen, and Tony Cingrani may get a few more early season save chances if Iglesias doesn’t start the season on time.
Iglesias, 27, finished last season with a 2.53 ERA and an 83/26 K/BB ratio in 78 1/3 innings across five starts and 32 relief appearances.