David Ortiz and the Red Sox created a whole lot of drama before eventually compromising at the exact midpoint and avoiding arbitration, but publicly at least Ortiz seems fine with the outcome after previously wanting a multi-year contract.
“I feel happy since I avoided going to arbitration,” Ortiz told the Associated Press. “People are used to see me with the Red Sox uniform and when you have so much time in one organization, and you’re identified with it, the best thing is to stay, even if it is for one or two million less.”
His one-year deal is a massive one at $14.575 million, so that obviously helps, and by settling at the midpoint Ortiz avoided the chance of arbitrators ruling in favor of the Red Sox to give him only a very small raise from 2011. Instead he gets a $2.075 million bump after hitting .309 with 29 homers and his highest OPS since 2007.
Jon Heyman reports that the Phillies are considering free agent starter Jake Arrieta.
That may seem kind of weird on the surface given that the Phillies, as Heyman notes, are considered to be at least a year from contention. Thing is, though, we really never know for sure when a team will definitely be in contention, do we? We’ve seen a handful of teams’ rebuilding efforts bear competitive fruit ahead of schedule in recent years, including the current World Series champion Houston Astros. They made the dang playoffs a year after losing 92 games, when everyone thought their true competitive window was several years away. Arrieta’s Cubs were much the same way, improving by 24 wins in 2015 to make the playoffs, in large part because of . . . acquiring Jake Arrieta.
Whether Arrieta, who is coming off of a 14-10, 3.53 ERA season, would be interested in the Phillies is unknown, but if I’m a Phillies fan, I’m happy that my club is being aggressive and is at least considering it.