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Cincinnati Reds, Tyler Mahle avoid arbitration with 1-year, $2.2 million deal

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One more arbitration hearing avoided.

Cincinnati Reds v Minnesota Twins Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images

Tyler Mahle picked a good time to flash his best stuff to date, as his 2020 campaign for the Cincinnati Reds once again highlighted his ability to be a regular in their rotation going forward. It was a small sample in a short season, of course, but the 47.2 IP of 133 ERA+ pitching he provided them has him penciled in as a rotation cog for 2021 and beyond, and he put all that on the table in a platform year, to boot.

Mahle was arbitration-eligible for the 1st time this offseason, and as today’s deadline for he and the Reds to reach an agreement on a 2021 salary and avoid a potentially ugly hearing down the road, the two clubs managed to find common ground at the last minute. As FanSided’s Robert Murray reported, the two sides settled on $2.2 million for 2021.

The MLB arbitration process is antiquated in many ways, but what it does is set a benchmark for players during their last years before reaching free agency. Mahle will get a trio of trips through the process, and each year’s salary will build off this initial number, so it’s a pretty damn important number to reach beyond the fact that it’ll be the first seven-figure salary of his career.

MLB Trade Rumors’ projection models had him slated for somewhere between $1.5 million and $2.5 million given the odd nature of the 2020 season, and this obviously falls roughly in the middle.

Mahle’s agreement comes on the heels of ones reached with each of Michael Lorenzen, Jesse Winker, and Noe Ramirez, leaving only Luis Castillo and Amir Garrett remaining unresolved out of this year’s arb-eligible class.