Kotchman in fold, is Bedard coming back?
Six down, none to go — and maybe somebody coming back.
Those are the headlines today out here in blogo-land. First baseman Casey Kotchman reached agreeement on a one-year, $3.5 million contract with the team, avoiding an arbitration hearing that had been scheduled for this month. The exact date of the hearing was never disclosed by either side, which is normal practice in these things. But color it moot now.
That means all six players eligile for salary arbitration signed without a cantankerous hearing.
Settlements began on Jan. 8 when center fielder Franklin Gutierrez signed a four-year, $20.5 million contract extension. Right-handed relievers David Aardsma and Mark Lowe came to terms on Jan. 19 for $2.75 million, and $1.15 million respectively; and, on the following day, ace right-hander Felix Hernandez signed a five-year, $78 million contract extension. Of lesser note that same day, right-handed reliever Brandon League agreed to a one-year, $1.0875 million contract.
The next order of business might be, surprise, surprise, re-signing left-hander Erik Bedard.
Yep, there are rumblings in blogo-land that Bedard could soon re-up with the Mariners, who are still paying his medical bills. Bedard is expected to miss the first three or four months of the regular season but conceievably could come back in late June or July and provide significant pitching help. When healthy, he has been good. But he’s been hurt more than healthy since being acquired from the Orioles in a trade that still makes me shake my head.
But a new contract with a low base salary and high incentives could be the way to go.
Anyway, stay tuned on that one.
– Jim Street