The Houston Astros have agreed to terms with left-handed pitcher Tim Byrdak on a one-year contract worth $1.6 million, plus bonuses, General Manager Ed Wade announced late Sunday evening.
As a result, the two sides have avoided a salary arbitration hearing. Byrdak was seeking $1.9 million while the Astros were offering $1.3 million, a difference of $600,000. The $1.6 million contract is the exact mid-point in-between the asking and offering figures. He earned $1 million in 2009. His $1.6 million contract for 2010 is a 60 percent increase from the year prior.
Byrdak, 36, was 1-2 in 76 appearances in 2009 with a 3.23 ERA (22ER/61.1IP). His 76 appearances were tops on the club while his .178 opponents batting average was the lowest in the Majors among left-handed hurlers. Byrdak allowed just 39 hits in his 61.1 innings pitched.
Since being signed by the Astros as a minor league free agent on April 3, 2008, Byrdak has appeared in 135 games, posting a 3.55 ERA (46ER/116.2IP) over that span while allowing just 84 hits in 116.2 innings of work. Since the start of the 2007 season, his .165 (43x260) opponents average vs. lefhanded hitters ranks second-best among all Major League pitchers, trailing only George Sherrill (.156).
As a result of Byrdak’s contract, Wandy Rodriguez is the only remaining arbitration-eligible player that has not agreed to terms. He is seeking $7 million while the Astros are offering $5 million. The mid-point between the two is $6 million.
Byrdak's signing reduces the number of players whose cases are pending to 30. Please visit the salary arbitration figures page for more information.
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