Papelbon gets questionable $2.5M pay raise
CSNNE.com’s Sean McAdam has reported that the Red Sox have avoided arbitration and agreed to contracts with Jacoby Ellsbury and Jonathon Papelbon. Ellsbury will be paid $2.4 million for his work in 2011, and Papelbon will receive a $2.5 million raise from his $9.5 million salary last year to $12 million in 2011. The Tampa Bay Rays’ current payroll for its entire roster is $16.4 million.
The raise comes after the worst season of Papelbon’s six-year career. With a 5-7 record, eight blown saves and the recent signing of former closer Bobby Jenks, the raise is a huge surprise. His 2010 ERA, 3.90, was 1.25 runs higher than his previous career high, 2.65, which he posted in 17 games his rookie season. He allowed 29 earned runs, 11 more than his career worst in 2008. In 2011, he also posted career highs with seven homeruns allowed, 28 walks and 33 percent inherited base runners scored.
Papelbon, who struggled with mixing up his pitches in 2009, had a lot of trouble locating his fastball in 2010. Papelbon will be the Red Sox primary closer despite the signing of Jenks. All statistics are courtesy of Baseball Reference.
Justin Gagnon can be reached at email@example.com.