This winter marks the last time that Colorado closer Huston Street will be eligible for arbitration. In today's Denver Post, Troy E. Renck implores the Rockies to skip the arbitration session and lock the 26-year-old up in a multi-year agreement. Back in January, the Rockies avoided going to arbitration with Street by inking him to a one-year deal worth $4.5MM.
Renck feels that Street is in line to make at least $7MM in 2010. Using the negotiations that Colorado had with closer Brian Fuentes nearly a year ago as a reference point, he sees Dan O'Dowd offering a deal which pays approximately $8MM a year. Renck then wonders aloud if $25MM over three seasons will be enough to avoid arbitration this time around.
If $25MM over three years turns out to be the absolute best offer Street can pull out of the Rockies, one has to think that he will likely go to arbitration in order to test the waters of free agency after the season. In 2009, Street posted an ERA of 2.73, his best since his rookie campaign in Oakland. Paired with a career-best 5.67 K/BB ratio and 10.3 K/9, Street is erasing memories of his slightly underwhelming 2008.
Using Fuentes as a reference point makes perfect sense, especially when considering that he too had a gaudy ERA and strikeout rate in 2008 (2.73, 11.8 K/9). However, it is obviously important to note the gap in age between the two: Fuentes was 32, Street just turned 26.
How high would you go to keep Huston Street for multiple seasons? 30MM over three? Higher? Let's hear your thoughts.