Brewers and Carlos Gomez avoid arbitration with one-year deal

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UPDATE: Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports that Gomez will earn $1.5 million in 2011, up from his $1.1 million salary in 2010.

8:38 PM: According to Adam McCalvy of MLB.com, the Brewers and Carlos Gomez avoided arbitration today by agreeing on a one-year contract.

Terms aren’t yet available, but Gomez made $1.1 million in his first time through the arbitration process as a “Super Two” last offseason.

Gomez, 25, batted just .247/.298/.357 over 291 at-bats with the Brewers this past season, disturbingly similar to his career batting line of .246/.293/.349 over 1,420 major league plate appearances. The former top prospect is still an asset defensively and possesses plus-speed, but it’s hard to do much damage if you can’t get to first base.

There was some debate about whether Gomez was going to be non-tendered earlier this month, but Brewers general manager Doug Melvin recently told Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that Lorenzo Cain was not going to be handed the starting center fielder job. There’s still a chance that Gomez will be traded, but if not, look for some competition during spring training.

And yes, I only did this story so I could post that picture.

Royals sign Drew Storen to minor league deal

Drew Storen
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The Royals are in agreement with right-handed reliever Drew Storen on a minor league deal, the team announced Friday. Per Jon Heyman of MLB Network, the deal is worth $1.25 million if the veteran righty breaks camp with the club this spring. Additional, albeit unspecified incentives will be included in the contract as well.

Storen, 31, is coming off of a protracted absence from any MLB duties. After inking a one-year deal with the Reds in 2017, he sustained a right elbow sprain toward the end of the year and underwent Tommy John surgery that October. He was effectively decommissioned for the club’s entire 2018 run and generated little interest around the league this winter, perhaps due in part to the uninspired 4.45 ERA, 3.8 BB/9, 7.9 SO/9, and career-low -0.2 fWAR he posted across 54 2/3 innings during his last healthy season.

While it’s not immediately clear what kind of performance the Royals can expect from Storen in spring training, they’re not exactly in a position to be choosy. Their bullpen ranked dead last among all MLB teams with a collective 5.04 ERA, 4.85 FIP, and -2.2 fWAR last year, and still appears to be in a state of flux as they approach Opening Day. Skipper Ned Yost told reporters Wednesday that he intends to eschew the traditional closer appointment in 2019 and will instead utilize a combination of right-handers Wily Peralta and Brad Boxberger, lefty Tim Hill, and various others as he tackles high-leverage situations in the future.