Evan Drellich of the Houston Chronicle broke the news this morning that the Astros and Evan Gattis have reached an accord on a one year deal with a team option for 2017.
Source: The Astros and Evan Gattis have reached a contract agreement for 2016, avoiding arbitration hearing today.— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) February 16, 2016
In further clarification, Drellich posited this moments later:
Evan Gattis makes $3.3 million this season. He has a team option for next season at $5.2 million or a $100,000 buyout.— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) February 16, 2016
The immediate reaction is that the deal is potentially a good one for both sides. If Evan Gattis pulverizes the ball, the Astros can pick up a cheap option in 2017. If he tanks entirely, the team can cut ties relatively painlessly with a $100,000 buyout. If his performance falls somewhere in the middle, the Astros can continue as planned or perhaps have a tiny bit more leverage at the trade table between today and August first.
From Evan Gattis' point of view, he gets the low end of what he'd likely have received in arbitration this year anyway, with the possibility of security in 2017 as well...if he goes out and does his job. Which, given what we know of El Oso Blanco's personality, he expects of himself in any event.
Gattis will miss most or all of Spring Training, but at least he will have some peace of mind while he recovers from his sports hernia surgery and resumes baseball activities.