The Reds and right-handed pitcher Johnny Cueto signed a four-year contract extension with a club option for 2015, the team announced (on Twitter). The deal is worth $27MM, tweets Enrique Rojas of ESPNDeportes.com.
Cueto was arbitration-eligible, and he and the Reds were about $900,000 apart on their submitted salary figures, per our Arbitration Tracker. The right-hander was seeking $3.9MM, while Cincinnati offered $3MM.
The deal buys out all three years of Cueto's arbitration eligibility, plus one year of potential free agency. Rumors of the Reds and Cueto having preliminary talks about a long-term extension surfaced in early December but were relatively quiet thereafter, as Cincinnati turned its focus on extending Jay Bruce and buying out Joey Votto's three years or arbitration-eligibility.
It's been a busy and expensive offseason after a resurgent 2010 for the Reds, who've committed a combined $151MM in salaries -- the majority of which went to Votto, Bruce and Cueto -- tweets Fay. Edinson Volquez remains unsigned after he and the Reds exchanged arbitration figures.
The 24-year-old Cueto posted a 3.64 ERA with 6.7 K/9 and 2.7 BB/9 in 185 2/3 innings last year. He has started at least 30 games for three consecutive seasons and has career marks of 7.3 K/9, 3.1 BB/9 and a 4.27 ERA.