The Tigers made some progress in solidifying their team today by agreeing to terms with three of the four players that filed for arbitration. Jeremy Bonderman will make $2.3 million next year in a one year deal. I was on the fence as to whether Bonderman should get a longer term deal or not, and it looks like Dave Dombrowski is being prudent and waiting one more year to see if Bonderman is worth the huge payout or not.
Chris Spurling will make $725,000. He’ll never overpower anyone (26 strikeouts in 70 2/3 innings) but he was pretty effective against both righties and lefties. The most interesting thing about Spurling is his home/road split. He seems to really take advantage of Comerica park to the tune of a 1.03 WHIP, .197 batting average against and a 1.66 ERA. On the road, those numbers balloon to a 1.26 WHIP, .264 batting average against and a 5.51 ERA.
Carlos Pena earned himself a paycheck by having a strong August and September after being sent down to AAA. He’ll make $2.8 million, but in a lot of ways, he’s the odd man out. Dmitri Young, for better or worse, will probably get the nod as the DH leaving Pena and Shelton to split time. Shelton earned the job with a strong season (not just a month and a half) so this will probably be one of the more interesting position battles this spring.
Craig Monroe is the guy who hasn’t signed yet. He put up solid numbers, but he’s pretty replaceable so I think the Tigers are going to be stuck paying him more then they’d like whether he ends up in arbitration or not.