Benson agrees to 3-year, $22.5M deal

Updated: November 20, 2004, 10:52 PM ET
Associated Press

NEW YORK -- Kris Benson and the New York Mets completed more than three months of negotiations, agreeing Saturday to a $22.5 million, three-year contract.

Kris Benson
Starting Pitcher
New York Mets
31 12 12 0 134 4.31

Benson's deal includes a $2.5 million signing bonus and a $7.5 million club option for 2008 with a $500,000 buyout. If the option is exercised, the contract would be worth $29.5 million over four seasons.

The deal is subject to Benson completing a physical, which is scheduled for New York on Monday.

New York wouldn't confirm the agreement, only that it asked Benson to have a physical. Contract details were provided by a person with knowledge of the negotiations who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

"We look forward to providing future information following the completion of the physical," the Mets said in a statement.

Benson, a 30-year-old right-hander, was scheduled to be in New York on Tuesday for a "Benson's Battalion" charity event.

He was acquired by New York from Pittsburgh on July 30 along with infielder Jeff Keppinger for infielder Ty Wigginton, right-hander Matt Peterson and infielder Jose Bautista. Benson went 4-4 with a 4.50 ERA in 11 starts with the Mets, leaving his record at 12-12 with a 4.31 ERA.

New York next turns its attention to finalizing a contract with Al Leiter. A baseball official, also speaking on the condition of anonymity, said Friday that New York and the 39-year-old left-hander were nearing agreement on a one-year contract worth $4 million to $5 million plus performance bonuses.

Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press