ESPN has an AP report that the Phillies have settled on a three-year deal with starter Joe Blanton worth $24 million to avoid a salary arbitration hearing. Blanton and the club had exchanged figures on Tuesday with Blanton asking for $10.25 million for 2010 and the club responding with $7.5 million.
The deal calls for Blanton to get paid $7 million in 2010, and $8.5 million each in 2011 and 2012. Should he pitch 200 innings in either 2010 or 2011, he'll receive an additional $250,000 in salary the following year.
The mid-point between the asking and offering figure for Blanton was $8.875 million. His $7 million salary for '10 is $1.875 million below the mid-point, thus outlining Blanton accepting long-term security over a single year payout. Even with the deal being well below the mid-point, Blanton, who is in his third year of salary arbitration will have a raise of 28 percent from the year prior when he made $5.475 million.
He won 12 games in his first full season with the Phillies. In 31 starts, he posted some his best peripheral rate stats of his career, except his home run rate, which is the downside of being a flyball pitcher in Citizens Bank Park.
Blanton's signing reduces the number of players whose cases are pending to 35. The Phillies have two cases pending with arbitration eligible players. They'll have until hearings begin in February to sign Carlos Ruiz and Shane Victorino. Please visit the salary arbitration figures page for more information.
Joe Tetreault is a member of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey.
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