The Chicago Cubs and pitcher Jake Arrieta began the arbitration process far apart in terms of their 2016 salary expectations, but the two sides came together late Friday night with an agreement that will pay the Cy Young Award winner $10.7 million next season.
The contract, which was first reported by the Associated Press, marks the largest one-year salary for a fourth-year pitcher in Major League history.
In mid-January, the Cubs and Arrieta exchanged arbitration figures, and the two sides were initially far apart. Arrieta’s agents asked for a $13 million salary for the 2016 season, while the Cubs countered with an offer of $7.5 million.
After a solid 2014 season, Arrieta took a huge step forward in the 2015 campaign with the Cubs. He sported an impressive 22-6 record with a 1.77 ERA, and he fended off Zach Greinke and Clayton Kershaw to win his first Cy Young Award because of his performance. For the 2015 season, Arrieta made $3.63 million.
According to reports this week, the two sides may still be working on a contract extension. Such a deal could keep Arrieta in Chicago for the foreseeable future, and although this new deal will guarantee to keep the pitcher in the fold for the 2016 season, the two sides could still agree on a longer-term contract extension.
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