After the season, the Reds will face a decision on Bronson Arroyo that will essentially be worth at least $9MM. Arroyo's $11MM option could increase to $13MM based on innings pitched, but the right-hander tells Hal McCoy of the Daily Dayton News that he thinks the team will exercise the option rather than pay the $2MM buyout.
"They have to pick up my option, no matter what, even if they planned to trade me,” Arroyo said. “They have to pick it up. If they let me walk for free ($2 million), they’d be giving me a huge lottery ticket."
Arroyo hints that while he wouldn't expect to earn Derek Lowe money ($15MM annually) if he becomes a free agent, his numbers (215.2 IP, 3.88 ERA) are probably good enough that teams would be willing to match or exceed the price Cincinnati would have to pay to keep him. When MLBTR's Ben Nicholson-Smith looked at the possibility of Arroyo reaching free agency, he agreed, suggesting the 33-year-old could earn a contract worth $20MM over two years. Still, Arroyo doesn't sound like he expects to hit the open market, indicating that he'd prefer to remain in Cincinnati anyway.
"I’d like to be here for a few more years," said Arroyo. "We have a young club with the opportunity for success down the road and I’m comfortable in my surroundings and I enjoy the city. I’d like to be here for at least three more, but it all depends on what they want."