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Baltimore Orioles: Contracts and Financial Overview

2011 payroll: $87,442,583


Free Agent-eligible

Brian Roberts: $10,000,000
Vladimir Guerrero: $8,000,000
Derrek Lee: $7,250,000
Mike Gonzalez: $6,000,000
Kevin Gregg: $4,200,000
Cesar Izturis: $1,500,000
Jeremy Accardo*: $1,080,000
Justin Duchscherer+: $700,000

*Non-tendered with less than 6 years of major-league service.
+Minor-league deal.

Brian Roberts signed a 4-year, $40 million deal in February of 2009, giving Baltimore his control through 2013 at $10 million a year. Roberts' contract includes a partial no-trade clause through 2011 and a full no-trade clause beginning in 2012--he is scheduled to be a 10-and-5 who can't be traded without his permission about a month and a half into the 2012 season anyway. This year he can block deals to 12 teams. Vladimir Guerrero signed a 1-year, $8 million deal this past offseason, but $3 million of it is deferred until 2016-2017 without interest, bringing the present value of the deal down to around $7 million. Derrek Lee signed a 1-year, $7.25 million deal this past offseason that includes $2.75 in playing-time bonuses, all of which will be attained if he records 600 plate appearances.

Mike Gonzalez signed a 2-year, $12 million deal in December of 2009, he is eligible for free agency after the season. Gregg signed a 2-year, $10 million deal in January of 2011. The deal pays him $4.2 million in 2011, $5.8 million in 2012, and includes a $6 million club option for 2013. The 2013 option will become guaranteed if Gregg finishes 50 games in 2012 or 100 in 2011-2012. Cesar Izturis signed a 1-year, $1.5 million deal in December of 2010. The deal includes $1.5 million in playing-time bonuses. Accardo was non-tendered by Toronto over the winter and signed a $1.08 million deal with Baltimore as a free agent. He remains under team control as an arbitration-eligible player in 2012. Duchscherer signed a minor-league deal that guarantees him $700,000, pays him a pro-rated portion of a $1.1 million salary while he's on Baltimore's active roster, and includes $3.4 million in playing-time bonuses. He's unlikely to pitch in the big-leagues at all in 2011, so the bonuses probably won't be triggered.


Nick Markakis: $10,600,000
Luke Scott: $6,400,000
J.J. Hardy: $5,850,000
Jeremy Guthrie: $5,750,000
Mark Reynolds: $5,333,333
Adam Jones: $3,250,000
Felix Pie: $985,000
Jim Johnson: $975,000

Nick Markakis signed a 6-year, $66 million extension in January of 2009, keeping him in Baltimore through 2014 with a $17.5 million mutual option for 2015. The contract inclues a partial no-trade clause and is laden with awards bonuses. Luke Scott signed a 1-year, $6.4 million deal, avoiding arbitration with Baltimore for the third time. Scott was a super 2 in 2009 and is under Baltimore's control as an arbitration-eligible player a fourth time in 2012. J.J. Hardy fell 8 days short of qualifying for free agency, instead settling for a 1-year, $5.85 million deal during his last trip through the arbitration process. When Hardy was acquired from the Twins, $500,000 was sent along to help cover part of his salary, bringing the Orioles' financial commitments for 2011 down to $86,942,583. Guthrie and Baltimore met exactly at the midpoint of the arbitration figures the parties exchanged ($6.5 million, $5 million) and settled on a 1-year, $5.75 million deal for 2011. He remains under team control as an arbitration-eligible player through the end of the 2012 season.

Reynolds signed a 3-year, $14.5 million extension with Arizona in March of 2010. The deal pays him $5 million in 2011, $7.5 million in 2012, and includes a $11 million club option for his 2013 services ($0.5 million buyout). Should the club decline the option and pay him the buyout, they could still elect to retain him as an arbitration-eligible player in 2013. Adam Jones signed a 1-year, $3.25 million contract during his first trip through the arbitration process. Felix Pie and Jim Johnson followed Jones' footsteps, though receiving a significantly lower salary.


Koji Uehara: $3,000,000
Brian Matusz: $1,350,000
Matt Wieters: $452,250
Brad Bergesen: $434,000
Robert Andino: $421,500
Jake Arrieta: $419,500
Chris Tillman: $419,500
Zach Britton: $419,500
Chris Jakubauskas: $419,500
Clay Rapada: $419,500
Alfredo Simon: $419,500
Craig Tatum: $419,500
Ryan Adams: $419,500
Nolan Reimold: $419,500

Uehara's first MLB contract paid him $10 million over two years with built in playing time bonuses. He re-signed with Baltimore as a free agent after that contract expired. Normally players with only 2 years of major-league service aren't eligible for free agency, but since Uehara spent 9 years playing in Japan his contract was structured such that he's treated as a 6+ year free agent rather than a rookie. His contract includes a 2012 vesting option, though the salary associated with it is unknown. Matusz's first professional contract--the one he signed after being drafted 4th overall in 2008--was a 4-year, $3.5 million big-league deal.

2012 Contracts

The Orioles have $35,983,000 guaranteed to players in 2012, all of which is allocated to Nick Markakis, Brian Roberts, Mark Reynolds, and Kevin Gregg. They have three big arbitration cases upcoming: Luke Scott's fourth and final, Jeremy Guthrie's third and final, and Adam Jones' second. Potential first-time arbitration eligible players include Matt Wieters, Brad Bergesen, Jason Berken, Nolan Reimold, and Robert Andino.


Koji Uehara's vesting option could push their commitments into the $60-$65 million range, but with Guerrero, Lee, Gonzalez, and Hardy all scheduled to hit free agency after the 2011 season the Orioles will have money to play with. They do pick fourth overall in this year's draft, but they spent $5.25 million to sign last year's 3rd overall pick--Manny Machado--and still operated with a payroll in the mid-$80 million range.

The Orioles could roll out a 2012 rotation that features four pre-arb players next year if they choose: Zach Britton, Jake Arrietta, Brian Matusz, and Chris Tillman. They'll wait on their shortstop of the future, Manny Machado, to develop, while they're set at 2B with Roberts, behind the plate with Wieters, in right field with Markakis, and in center with Jones. Luke Scott could be retained to DH or play left field, but he seems like a viable trade candidate. Nolan Reimold and Josh Bell are two players to keep an eye on for potentially snagging every-day jobs in 2012. If Bell does so, he'd either be used at 1st or push Mark Reynolds across the diamond or into the DH role.

The Orioles have some things to figure out, but none more important than who they'll select with the 4th overall pick later this afternoon.

See also: Cot's Baseball Contracts: Baltimore Orioles