Assistant GM Gord Ash confirmed today that the Brewers have discussed a multiyear contract with closer John Axford, Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and Adam McCalvy of MLB.com report. Ash said the sides will likely agree to a one-year deal for 2012 by Friday’s renewal deadline for pre-arbitration eligible players before resuming talks. It sounds as though Axford is optimistic about working something out.
“I’d love the security,” he said, according to McCalvy. “I love Milwaukee, I’d love to play there as long as I could. I would love to begin my career there and end my career there, in all honesty.”
The sides have discussed a deal of at least four years in length, according to Haudricourt. Axford will be arbitration eligible as a super two player following the 2012 season and he's under team control through 2016. A four-year deal that begins in 2012 would cover three of Axford’s four arbitration seasons. The Brewers would presumably look to obtain a club option or two in exchange for the long-term security.
Axford led the National League with 46 saves in 2011, posting a 1.95 ERA with 10.5 K/9 and 3.1 BB/9 in 73 2/3 innings. Agent Dan Horwits of Beverly Hills Sports Council represents the 28-year-old.