Just two days after the MLB, the MLBPA, reached an agreement with the Florida Marlins that they would increase MLB player payroll after the union for the players believed them to not be spending revenue-sharing dollars the manner the current CBA defines it, they broke out the wallet.
According to ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick, the Marlins have signed pitcher Josh Johnson to a guaranteed $39 million contract that will keep the player wrapped up with the Marlins through 2013.
In a sign that the contract is tied to the opening of the new ballpark for the Marlins, something outlined in the agreement with MLB and the MLBPA, Johnson’s contract is heavily backloaded. As reported by Crasnick:
The deal will pay Johnson $3.75 million this season, $7.75 million in 2011 and $13.75 million in each of the 2012 and 2013 seasons.
Johnson's contract is the second-biggest ever for a pitcher heading into his second salary arbitration. The only bigger deal was signed by Johan Santana, who agreed to a four-year, $40 million contract with Minnesota in February 2005 after winning the Cy Young Award.
Johnson made $1.4 million last year. His $3.75 million salary for 2010 is an increase of 168 percent. To add to the deal, he sees an increase of 107 percent from this season to 2011 and an 83 percent increase from 2011 to 2012 when his salary levels off for the 2013.
As further reported by Crasnick, the jumping off point for the near recording-setting salary arb deal, was Zack Greinke's four-year, $38 million contract with Kansas City, while the Marlins countered with a reported three-year, $23 million offer.
With the salary arbitration filing period ending tomorrow, the Marlins have six players left that are salary arbitration eligible, Jorge Cantu, Leo Nunez, Renyel Pinto, Cody Ross, Anibal Sanchez, and Dan Uggla. Uggla will be a key player to deal with in the salary arbitration process. Last year, the Marlins and the top-tier second baseman went all the way to salary arbitration hearing, where Uggla won his $5.35 million asking figure to the Marlins $4.4 million offering figure.
As of Thursday – the day before the salary arbitration filing period ends – there were 133 players still salary arbitration eligible. See The Biz of Baseball’s salary arbitration tracker for details.
Maury Brown is the Founder and President 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 is available for hire or freelance. Brown's full bio is here. He looks forward to your comments via email and can be contacted through the Business of Sports Network.
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