The Giants continued to secure the core elements of their pitching staff for the foreseeable future, officially announcing the signing of Brian Wilson, Jeremy Affeldt and Matt Cain. Both Affeldt and Wilson's deal were leaked last week.
The club regards the move as an effort to keep the club's strong pitching staff intact for the upcoming future. Affeldt receives a one-year extension for the 2011 season, with a club option for 2012. Affeldt's deal is worth a guaranteed $9.5 million. There is also a club option worth $5 million. Wilson receives a two-year extension for 2011 and 2012. We reported the details of the contract last week.
Details about Cain's contract are still to be revealed, but it keeps him in San Francisco through the 2012 season. Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News reports that the deal runs from 2010 through 2012 and will pay Cain $4.5 million in 2010. He estimates Cain will earn $8 million in 2011 and better than $15 million in 2012. Cain would have been eligible for free agency after the 2011 season.
By locking up the three pitchers, the starting rotation has four pitchers under team control through the 2012 season, with Cain (signed through 2012), Tim Lincecum (arbitration eligible through 2013), Jonathan Sanchez (arbitration eligible through 2012) and Barry Zito (signed through 2013 with a club option for 2014).
"Pitching is our hallmark," said Sabean. "By signing these three outstanding pitchers, this gives us cost certainty in this area and makes a statement to our fan base that we realize their importance."
Cain, 25, won 14 games against 8 losses last season with an ERA of 2.89. His peripherals were also quite strong allowing 7.6 hits per nine innings while striking out 7.1 batters per nine. His hit rate was partially the product of a remarkably low .267 BABIP. The league average tends to be near .300, but even without last year, Cain had one significantly better than average. Being able to duplicate that effort will be essential to building on last season's numbers.
Wilson,28, was one of the most effective closers in the National League in 2009. His 38 saves for the Giants in 2009, with a 2.79 ERA over 72.1 innings pitched.
Affeldt, who turns 31 in June, split four decisions last season, appearing in 74 games and recording a 1.73 ERA. He had a team best 33 holds and stranded 72% of the runners he inherited on the season.
Joe Tetreault is Managing Editor 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. He can be contacted here through The Biz of Baseball
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