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A’s re-sign Deolis Guerra, avoid arbitration

Reliever gets one-year contract for 2022

Oakland Athletics v Los Angeles Angels Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

The Oakland A’s re-signed reliever Deolis Guerra to a one-year contract on Tuesday, reports Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. Guerra avoids arbitration and will get an $815,000 salary in 2022.

The right-hander joined the A’s last winter on a minor league contract and spent almost the entire season in Oakland’s bullpen, quietly serving as an effective arm in the middle innings. He was especially helpful as a long reliever, working three innings on three occasions and recording at least five outs in 15 of his 53 appearances.

  • Guerra, 2021: 4.11 ERA, 65⅔ ip, 62 Ks, 20 BB, 8 HR, 3.96 FIP, .273 xwOBA

That performance served as a bounce-back for Guerra, who had done quality work for the Angels in 2016-17 but then fallen off the MLB radar for a few years before coming to the A’s. He doesn’t blow away hitters with big velocity, averaging under 91 mph with his heater last summer, but he gets good spin, locates well, and puts opponents off-balance with a five-pitch mix.

Between his recent success, and a price point barely above the league’s minimum salary, keeping Guerra is an easy call. This was his first year of arbitration eligibility, so he’s under team control for two more years through 2024. He’ll pitch at age 33 next year.

Oakland still has lots of work to do in their bullpen this winter, after losing most of their crew to free agency. Among relievers who threw at least 20 innings in the majors last season, only Guerra and Lou Trivino remain in the organization.

Arbitration deadline

The A’s entered the offseason with 10 players eligible for arbitration, and they’ve now settled with three of them before today’s tender deadline. The other seven must at least receive commitments by 5 p.m. PT, though their salaries don’t need to be determined yet. Any players who are non-tendered will become free agents.

(Update: A few minutes after this post published, the A’s officially tendered contracts to the rest of their eligible players. The other seven salaries are still yet to be determined.)

Here’s the full list, including salary projections from MLB Trade Rumors:

  • 1B Matt Olson – $12.0m
  • LHP Sean Manaea – $10.2m
  • 3B Matt Chapman – $9.5m
  • RHP Chris Bassitt – $8.8m
  • RHP Frankie Montas – $5.2m
  • RHP Lou Trivino – $2.9m
  • OF Ramon Laureano – $2.8m
  • UT Chad Pinder$2.8m (signed: $2.725m)
  • 2B Tony Kemp$2.2MM (signed: $2.25m)
  • RHP Deolis Guerra$900k (signed: $815k)

Presumably, everybody else on the list will at least be tendered today. (Update: They were.)