Angels, Saunders agree to 2010 contract

Updated: January 30, 2010, 12:37 AM ET
By Mark Saxon |

The Los Angeles Angels aren't likely to taste the acrimony of arbitration this spring.

The club agreed to terms on a 2010 contract with left-handed pitcher Joe Saunders for $3.7 million on Friday, reducing the number of unsigned players eligible for arbitration to two. Those players are shortstop Erick Aybar and catcher Jeff Mathis.

Saunders, 28, went 33-14 the past two seasons. The sides seemed unlikely to go to arbitration from the start because their stances weren't far apart. Saunders was asking for $3.85 million, and the Angels had offered $3.6 million.

Aybar is seeking $2.75 million, $950,000 more than the Angels have offered. Mathis requested $1.3 million; the Angels offered him $700,000.

Mark Saxon covers the Angels for

Mark Saxon
Mark Saxon is a staff writer for He spent six years at the Orange County Register, and began his career at the Oakland Tribune, where he started an 11-year journey covering Major League Baseball. He has also covered colleges, including USC football and UCLA basketball.