AP source: Papelbon, Delcarmen agree with Red Sox
BOSTON -- The Red Sox and closer Jonathan Papelbon agreed Tuesday to a $9.35 million, one-year contract, the highest salary for a reliever with four years of major league service.
Papelbon's salary surpassed Mariano Rivera's $7.25 million contract for relievers with four years of service time. Papelbon would earn an extra $50,000 if he finishes 60 games.
He also avoided arbitration last year by agreeing to a $6.25 million base salary, and earned an extra $50,000 for making the AL All-Star team. His new agreement was reached after agents Sam and Seth Levinson asked for $10.25 million in arbitration and the club offered $8.45 million.
Papelbon had a 1.85 ERA with 38 saves in 41 opportunities and a 1-1 record last season but struggled more than in previous seasons. In the final game of the Los Angeles Angels' three-game playoff sweep, Papelbon allowed three runs in the ninth inning and the Red Sox lost 7-6. Until then, he had thrown a record 26 scoreless innings to start his postseason career.
Since becoming Boston's closer in 2006, Papelbon has a 1.74 ERA with 151 saves in 168 opportunities and an 11-10 record. In his career, which began in 2005 with 14 relief appearances and three starts, he has 346 strikeouts and 77 walks in 298 innings. But last season he issued 24 walks after allowing just eight in 2008.
Ramirez was 7-4 with a 2.84 ERA in 70 relief appearances last year, and Delcarmen was 5-2 with a 4.53 ERA in 64 appearances. Delcarmen would earn a $15,000 bonus if he pitches in 65 games.
AP Sports Writer Ronald Blum in New York contributed to this report.
Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press
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