How much does a no-hitter get you? About $5.35 million. Obviously Homer Bailey's no-hitter last season is not the reason the Cincinnati Reds gave him a one-year deal to avoid arbitration. The team likes how he's pitched, the direction he seems to be heading, and what he brings to the club.
Jon Heyman of CBS Sports says the Reds agreed to terms with Bailey and signed the 26-year old righty to a one-year deal. Previously, the team had discussed a long-term extension, and that's certainly not out of the question even after this deal. This contract simply allows the two sides to move forward without attending an arbitration hearing.
Related: More on the Bailey deal.
Bailey tossed a no-hitter for the Reds last year on September 28th. He did it with 115 pitches and struck out 10 batters in the process. It was a marvelous performance, but as no-hitters of the past have shown us, the feat does not guarantee future success. The Reds are far more interested in Bailey's historical performances during his time with the club than they are with his no-no.
The Reds drafted Bailey 7th overall in 2004. He made his Major League debut only one year later. Bailey has now spent parts of the last six seasons in Cincinnati and has proven himself as a solid pitcher overall. In his career, he has a 38-33 record and a 4.50 ERA. The ERA maybe troubling, but Bailey has shown a downward trend for ERA in each of his last four seasons (2009: 4.53, 2010: 4.46, 2011: 4.43, 2012: 3.68). If he can continue that trend, the Reds will surely want to extend Bailey long-term.
Bailey has one more year of arbitration eligibility before he can hit free agency. So if the Reds are going to make a long-term deal happen, it will likely come this season or sometime in the offseason. Of course, if Bailey flames out this year, the Reds may just let him play out his control years and see what happens.