Indians sign Josh Tomlin to contract extension

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Right-hander Josh Tomlin and the Indians have agreed to a two-year, $5.5 million contract with a team option for 2018, according to Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

Tomlin and the Indians previously avoided arbitration with a one-year, $2.25 million earlier this month, so the new contract includes that figure for 2016 along with $2.5 million plus incentives for 2017 and a $3 million option or $750,000 buyout for 2018.

In other words, Cleveland is pre-paying for Tomlin’s arbitration next season and also gaining control over what would have been his first season of free agency in 2018.

Tomlin missed much of last season following shoulder surgery, but pitched well upon returning with a 3.02 ERA and 57/8 K/BB ratio in 66 innings. Tomlin has good control, modest raw stuff, and a lifetime 4.65 ERA, but the price tags are a drop in the bucket even if he’s merely a decent back-of-the-rotation starter.