Diamondbacks Sign Zach Duke

The Diamondbacks avoided arbitration with Zach Duke by signing the left-hander to a one-year contract with a mutual option for 2012, reports MLB.com's Steve Gilbert.  Duke will earn $3.5MM next season (via Gilbert on Twitter), and Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic tweets that the mutual option is worth $5.5MM with a $750K buyout.  Piecoro adds that if Duke pitches a certain number of innings, the mutual option for 2012 could be worth $7MM.  Duke is represented by SFX.

Duke and the team finalized the deal just before yesterday's non-tender deadline, and the left-hander would've in fact been non-tendered had the two sides not come to terms.  Arizona acquired Duke in a trade from the Pirates on November 24.  As D'Backs GM Kevin Towers tells Gilbert, the club sees Duke as their fifth starter.

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