Mariners sign Vladimir Guerrero’s nephew for $400,000

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Yesterday the Mariners signed Felix Hernandez’s older brother to a minor-league contract and now they’ve signed Vladimir Guerrero’s nephew, giving 17-year-old Dominican outfielder Gabriel Guerrero a $400,000 bonus.

Ben Badler of Baseball America has a brief scouting report on Gabriel and it actually sounds quite a bit like Vlad:

Guerrero, a big-bodied right-handed hitter, has shown good raw power and has made improvements at the plate and in the field since he became eligible to sign last year on July 2. He projects as a corner outfielder with a solid arm.

Obviously the odds are against Gabriel Guerrero developing into one of the best right-handed hitters of all time simply because of his bloodlines, but “big bodied right-handed hitter” and “a corner outfielder with a solid arm” are definitely Vlad-like traits and the $400,000 price tag suggests he’s a legitimate prospect.

David Cameron of U.S.S. Mariner and Fan Graphs jokingly suggested on Twitter that perhaps the Mariners have ditched their scouting department and are now simply focusing on finding all their players via genetic testing. In which case, I have two words for them: Ozzie Canseco.

RHP Fairbanks, Rays agree to 3-year, $12 million contract

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Dave Nelson/USA TODAY Sports
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Reliever Pete Fairbanks and the Tampa Bay Rays avoided arbitration when they agreed Friday to a three-year, $12 million contract that could be worth up to $24.6 million over four seasons.

The deal includes salaries of $3,666,666 this year and $3,666,667 in each of the next two seasons. The Rays have a $7 million option for 2026 with a $1 million buyout.

His 2024 and 2025 salaries could increase by $300,000 each based on games finished in the previous season: $150,000 each for 35 and 40.

Tampa Bay’s option price could increase by up to $6 million, including $4 million for appearances: $1 million each for 60 and 70 in 2025; $500,000 for 125 from 2023-25 and $1 million each for 135, 150 and 165 from 2023-25. The option price could increase by $2 million for games finished in 2025: $500,000 each for 25, 30, 35 and 40.

Fairbanks also has a $500,000 award bonus for winning the Hoffman/Rivera reliever of the year award and $200,000 for finishing second or third.

The 29-year-old right-hander is 11-10 with a 2.98 ERA and 15 saves in 111 appearances, with all but two of the outings coming out of the bullpen since being acquired by the Rays from the Texas Rangers in July 2019.

Fairbanks was 0-0 with a 1.13 ERA in 24 appearances last year after beginning the season on the 60-day injured list with a right lat strain.

Fairbanks made his 2022 debut on July 17 and tied for the team lead with eight saves despite being sidelined more than three months. In addition, he is 0-0 with a 3.60 ERA in 12 career postseason appearances, all with Tampa Bay.

He had asked for a raise from $714,400 to $1.9 million when proposed arbitration salaries were exchanged Jan. 13, and the Rays had offered for $1.5 million.

Fairbanks’ agreement was announced two days after left-hander Jeffrey Springs agreed to a $31 million, four-year contract with Tampa Bay that could be worth $65.75 million over five seasons.

Tampa Bay remains scheduled for hearings with right-handers Jason Adam and Ryan Thompson, left-hander Colin Poche, third baseman Yandy Diaz and outfielder Harold Ramirez.