Brad Lidge avoided arbitration (or even the exchange of numbers) Tuesday by agreeing to a one-year deal that nets him a 1.375 million dollar raise.
While your immediate reaction is that 5.35 million is a lot of money for six blown saves and a 5-something ERA, a quick look around indicates that if you have any kind of faith in a return to form for Bradley, this is not stupid money.
These are the guys who posted more than Lidge's 32 saves in 2006:
|Francisco Rodriguez||7 million simoleons (2007)|
|Trevor Hoffman||6,500,00 clams (2007)|
|Bobby Jenks||340 Grand (2006), but in line for a large raise|
|Billy Wagner||10,500,00 beans (2007)|
|BJ Ryan||5 million bucks (2007)|
|Todd Jones||5,190,841 berries (2007)|
|JJ Putz||415 Large (2006), but deserving of a substantial payhike|
|Jonathan Papelbon||335,400 coconuts (2006), but tell me you wouldn't wanna be his agent|
|Tom Gordon||7 million smackers (2007)|
|Mariano Rivera||10,500,000 pesos (2007)|
|Bob Wickman||6,500,000 aces (2007)|
|Jason Isringhausen||8,750,000 bones (2007)|
|Joe Nathan||5,250,000 washingtons (2007)|
|Huston Street||339 G (2006), but looking to cash in on the bright young resume, I'm sure|
|Joe Borowski||4,250,000 greenbacks (2007)|
In addition, several of these guys are promised money in '08, or even beyond.
Put it this way: Would you rather pay Brad Lidge 5-3/8 mil for one year, or Joe Borowski 8 and a quarter for two?