2:30 p.m., Feb. 5)
hurler signs one year, $7.75M deal with Seattle Mariners
By Fred Sherwin
hurler Erik Bédard only started 15 games in 2008, but he still managed get a $750,000
raise from the Seattle Mariners who recently signed him to a one year contract
worth $7.75 million.
season was cut short last July when he was placed on the 15-day disabled list
with a shoulder injury. He went 6-4 with a 3.67 ERA in 15 starts after being acquired
by the Mariners from the Baltimore Orioles in the off-season. The 29-year-old
southpaw eventually underwent shoulder surgery in August which kept him out of
the lineup the rest of the season.
has had a history of injuries most notable an elbow ligament injury in 2002 that
required Tommy John surgery and forced him to spend most of the 2003 season in
the minors on rehab assignment.
2004, he went 6-10 with an 4.59 ERA and average almost eight strikeouts per nine
innings pitched. In 2005, he started the season with a 2.08 ERA, but then sprained
his knee which sidelined him for two months. When he returned his ERA balooned
his first injury free season in 2006, Bédard was 15-11 and posted a 3.76
ERA. He also stuck out 171 batters. In 2007, he established himself as one of
the most dominating left-handers in the American League. On July 7, he tied the
franchise record for strikeouts in a game against the Texas Rangers with 15.
went on to set a new franchise record for strikeouts in a season with 221 and
was largely considered to be a bona fide candidate for the Cy Young Award before
a strained oblique muscle cut his season short. He finished the season with a
13-5 record and posted a 3.16 ERA to go along with all the strikouts.
his contract about to expire, Bédard was eligible for arbitration, and
having only made $1.4 million in the final year of the contract, he was due for
a big raise.
than risk an expensive arbitration settlement, the Orioles traded him to the Mariners
who immediately signed him to a one-year, $7 mllion deal. With that deal about
to expire, the Mariners and Bédard had a choice to either work out a new
deal, or risk going the arbitration route.
the base salary figure of $7.75 million, Bédard can make an additional
$600,000 in performance bonuses that are tied to the number of innings he pitches.
He will get an extra : $75,000 for 150 innings, $100,000 for 165 innings, $150,000
for 180 innings, $125,000 for 195 innings and $150,000 for 205 innings.
the past five seasons, Bédard has only pitched more than 150 innings in
a season twice -- his injury free year in 2006 when he pitched 196 innings, and
in 2007 when he pitched 182 innings.
and catchers are scheduled to report to spring training during the weekend of
Feb. 13. The Major League Baseball season kicks off on
10:30 p.m., Feb. 3)
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