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Friday, January 27, 2023

Sources: Rays, Pete Fairbanks agree to 3-year, $12M extension

Reliever Pete Fairbanks and the Tampa Bay Rays agreed Friday on a three-year, $12 million contract extension with a club option for a fourth season, sources familiar with the deal told ESPN on Friday.

Fairbanks, 29, was dominant over the final 2½ months of the 2022 season, ending the year with 22 scoreless innings in which he struck out 36, allowed 9 hits and walked 3 batters. Fairbanks missed the first 3½ months of the season with a torn lat muscle, but his return resembled the previous two years, in which he’d developed into a strikeout machine.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 27, 2023 at 04:12 PM | 4 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: pete fairbanks, rays

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   1. John Reynard Posted: January 27, 2023 at 04:37 PM (#6114812)
If he's healthy, this is a very team friendly deal. But, I guess that is the big "if". Fairbanks is smart to take the deal since its his first genuinely real big payout and it mainly covers his arbitration years anyhow.
   2. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 27, 2023 at 05:04 PM (#6114816)
I don't think it's that team-friendly for arb years. If he was a FA, what would he have gotten? 3/20-25?
   3. Walt Davis Posted: January 27, 2023 at 11:25 PM (#6114843)
I think Snapper's right on this one. Closers get paid in arb but, to date, non-closers haven't really. Mainly this deal allows the Rays to move him to a traditional closer's role if they want to without taking the financial hit. Some arb year totals

Estevez <6
L Jackson <5
Lugo 8
Strahm <7
Montero <6

As a super-2 non-closer back in the 2018-19 offseason, Taylor Rogers got $1.5 M. He became a closer in 2019 and the next year he got $4.5, followed by $6 and $7.3.

So 3/$12 for the arb years of a non-closer is not cheap. Tampa hasn't used a regular closer since 2019 -- the immortal Emilio Pagan who Tampa immediately sent to SD for Manuel Margot; Pagan has been below replacement since. Pagan's arb years cost $7.3

EDIT: So the option year might be the key to the deal from Tampa's perspective.
   4. John Reynard Posted: January 28, 2023 at 01:16 AM (#6114847)
I'm assuming he'll be the closer if healthy. If not, $12M is just like accidentally signing Jesus Aguilar to a multi-year deal.

The odds of Fairbanks being bad if he's on the field are fairly low.

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