Kameron Loe has avoided arbitration, signing a one-year deal worth $1.25 million, with up to an additional $115,000 available if Loe pitches in 78 games. Adam McCalvy was first with the story.
As McCalvy notes, Loe is actually settling for less than the midway point between his request for $1.65 million and the team’s offer of $1.055 million. If Loe makes appearances at the rate he did last year, he should have no problem hitting that 78-game mark. Of course, his arm will probably fall off if he pitches that often again, too. But we can worry about that bridge when we get to it. Just for some perspective, last season, 78 appearances would have been good for a Top 10 finish in the National League — Washington’s Tyler Clippard was 8th in the NL with that exact amount of games played.
This is a good example of not being able to trust anything said in the media during this time of year — Gord Ash was telling anyone who would listen that despite the relatively small gap between the two figures submitted for Loe’s case, there was a good chance a hearing would have to happen. As it turns out, we didn’t even make it until the end of the week before Loe was under contract. We can only hope that means good things when it comes to negotiations with Rickie Weeks, but nobody should be holding their breath on that.
With a salary of $1.25 million, Loe is still a very affordable — and very valuable — piece of the Brewers’ bullpen. By bringing in Takashi Saito, they likely won’t have to rely on Loe to pitch the 8th inning as often, and can instead use him in more high-leverage situations. Considering his ability to force so many groundballs, it’s a much better use of his talents (as long as he’s not counted on to get a tough lefty out).
With Loe signing, Rickie Weeks and Shaun Marcum are the only arbitration-eligible Brewers remaining.