Kemp Signs Two-Year Deal To Avoid Arbitration

MONDAY, 7:07pm: Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times reports that Kemp's contract could allow him to make up to $11.25MM in total. 

If Kemp makes 600 plate appearances this year, he would increase his 2011 salary by $50K.  If he makes 650 plate appearances, he'd earn an additional $100K, and 700 plate appearances would tack on another $150K.

Kemp made 667 plate appearances in 2009 and 657 the year prior.

FRIDAY, 7:40pm: The Dodgers avoided arbitration with Matt Kemp today and signed him to a two-year contract worth nearly $11MM. The deal, which the sides have been working on all week, is now official, tweets Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times. Kemp was arbitration-eligible for the first time, so the Dodgers will have him under team control for another season after the deal expires. By that point, Kemp will be considerably richer, as he is set to earn $4MM this year and $6.95MM in 2011.

That's more than what two comparable players, Nick Markakis and Carlos Beltran, got for the same two years. Beltran earned $9.5MM for his first two arbitration years and Markakis will earn $9.75MM. Kemp, who is only 25, combined good center field defense with an .842 OPS for the Dodgers last year.

Jim Bowden first reported that the sides were close to a deal and's Ken Gurnick said they had reached an agreement before Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times added the details.

Gurnick hears that the Dodgers are also talking two-year deals with Andre Ethier, Jonathan Broxton and James Loney. They agreed to terms with Chad Billingsley on a 2010 contract today.

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