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The Baltimore Orioles entered Monday evening awaiting the results of a physical in order to complete a four-year, $50 million with former Indians right-handed pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez.
The contract numbers were reported by CBS’s Jon Heyman, with him noting some of money could be “deferred so value may be counted as slightly less”.
If the deal goes though, the Orioles forfeit their first-round (17th overall) pick in this year’s draft. Per MLB’s Collective Bargaining Agreement, Jimenez has first-round draft pick compensation tied to him after he declined the Indians one-year, $14.1 million qualifying offer.
Jimenez, 30, went 13-9 with a 3.30 ERA with the Tribe last season. With 194 strikeouts and 80 walks in 182 2/3 innings, the “Big U” was arguably the best pitcher in the American League in the second half last year.
In fact, it’s feasible the Tribe might not have finished the 2013 season on a 10-game winning streak that landed them in a one-game wild card playoff if not for Jimenez’s huge contributions down the stretch.
However, four years and $50million (early offseason rumors had Jimenez’s agent asking for a long-term deal upwards of $60 million) is a risky deal for a guy who was arguably the league’s worst pitcher for the first year and a half he was with Cleveland following the 2011 blockbuster deadline trade with the Colorado Rockies.
As the news broke early Monday evening, ESPN baseball anayst Buster Olney tweeted that the Orioles thought the Boston Red Sox and Toronto Blue Jays were involved in a bidding war, so they upped their original three-year offer to a fourth year.