Brewers, Axford Talking Extension

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 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.

19 Responses to Brewers, Axford Talking Extension Leave a Reply

  1. diesel2410 3 years ago

    Would be a great move. Axford is a monster

  2. BrettLawrieBiggestFan 3 years ago

    Jays shall trade santos for a #2/#3 starter and sign him. Canada loves watching Canadian players play for toronto

    • TophersReds 3 years ago

      Am I reading the same post you are…?

      • diesel2410 3 years ago

        Oh let him fantasize… 

        • Lunchbox45 3 years ago

           Be prepared world, Jays homers are back after a 20 year hiatus

          • diesel2410 3 years ago

            They’re like this at the start of EVERY year. Then they start to fade away after the first month of the season

          • Lunchbox45 3 years ago

            That will change, especially now with the extra wild card they’ll be sticking around longer..

            its the first sign a team is on the upswing. Someone should do a Homers/Prospect study

  3. jwsox 3 years ago

    Of course he wants security. He probably understands that Bullpen pitchers especially closers are the most volatile and replaced(able) pitchers on the 25 man roster, with exception to a few, i would want security too as a bullpen pitcher. And as a closer one bad stretch or year he could be gone or demoted to set up or middle relief.

    • chrisn313 3 years ago

      Well said. Even before last year he was not considered among the top reliable closers. It’s just a few bad pitches away from obscurity for most closers.

      • jwsox 3 years ago

        Right now mo is probably the only closer who will not lose his job. The only other two I can think of are pap(money) and Wilson

        • TophersReds 3 years ago

          Jose Valverde says hello.

          • jwsox 3 years ago

            I always forget about him so yeah there is one for sure and 3 maybe 4 who are more than likely safe.

  4. garylanglais 3 years ago

    The Brewers and Axford will likely use Santos’ extension and Brian Wilson’s arbitraiton salaries for comparisons.  Santos signed his extension one season before becoming arbitration eligible (as Axford would be).  Difference is Axford’s deal would have to cover four arb seasons compared to Santos’ three.

    Santos signed a 3yr/$8.25m deal with 3 club options.  Max total value: 6yr/$30.25m.  At its shortest, the deal would buy out two of Santos’ three arb years.  At its longest, all three arb years and two FA years.

    I would guess the Brewers would frame a deal around 4 years with 2 club options.  This would buy out 1 FA season if the both options were exercised. 

    For arb salaries, Brian Wilson would be a solid player comparison.  Like Axford, Wilson was a Super Two closer and was rewarded with a $4.4375m salary for that first year.  He then signed a 2 yr/$15m extension for the 2nd and 3rd arb year.  It breaks down as…

    2010: $4.4375m
    2011: $6.5m
    2012: $8.5m

    Statistically speaking, the two are very similar and the scales may even point in Axford’s favor.  However, Wilson did sign the 2 year extension after winning the WS and finishing 13th in the MVP voting (although Axford finished 17th this past season).

    Considering all that a breakdown could work as so…

    2012: $1m (same as Santos in the 1st year of his extension)
    2013: $4.5m
    2014: $6.5m
    2015: $8.5m

    Total: 4yr/$20.5m (with 1 year of arb remaining)

    As said before, the Brewers will want security through club options…

    2016: $10m ($1m buyout)
    2017: $12.5m  ($1m buyout)

    Would bring the previous total to 4 yr/$21.5m and max total value to 6 yr/$43m.  Pure speculation on my part but Santos and Wilson would be the logical players to use in this situation.


  5. Fizzzay 3 years ago

    The way the Brewer’s closers have operated for the past 7 or 8 years, I’d rather not give him an extension yet.  Wait a year to see if he’s still pitching well, if it costs some more money so be it, but I think waiting is better than risking a lot on one year.  Doug, put your effort towards Grienke.  SP is way more important than closing.

    Edit: I’m a Brewer fan, and I love Ax. Closer is too volatile for my taste.

    • $1742854 3 years ago

       Derrick Turnbow would agree here.

    • toddcoffeytime 3 years ago

      Agreed, with Doug Melvin’s proven ability to pull above average closers off the trash heap, I’d say extending Axford should not be anywhere near a top priority for the Brewers.

  6. Runtime 3 years ago

    My dad and his brother were friends with Gord Ash when they were kids.

    True story

  7. I’m still not convinced with Axford yet.  I know the number of saves tells a good story, but for a while he couldn’t get a save unless he let two hitters get on base.  It was always hard to belive he just morphed into an elite closer.  Give him a bit more then the Brewers usually give their 1-3yr playes and wait until the all star break to give him an extension. 

Leave a Reply