The Padres announced this evening they’ve signed right-hander Nick Martínez. They agreed to terms with the former NPB starter in the waning hours before the lockout, but the deal wasn’t finalized before the work stoppage.
Martínez’s deal was originally reported as a four-year, $20MM guarantee that included opt-outs after each of the first two seasons. However, the team announced the agreement as a one-year contract with successive player options for 2023, 2024 and 2025 — indicating he can opt-out after any of the first three years. Meanwhile, Dennis Lin of the Athletic reports (on Twitter) that he’s actually guaranteed $25.5MM.
That breaks down as a $2MM signing bonus and a $4MM salary this year followed by successive $6.5MM player options, each of which include buyouts worth $1.5MM. Were Martínez to opt out next winter, he’d be leaving $18MM over three years on the table. For every season in which he starts 20 games, the following year’s salary escalates by $1MM.
Martínez commanding such a strong deal registered as a surprise. Padres president of baseball operations A.J. Preller is familiar with him from their days together with the Rangers organization, however, and the Fordham product is coming off an excellent run in Japan. Over three seasons in NPB split between the Nippon-Ham Fighters and the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks, Martínez pitched to a 3.02 ERA.
To clear space on the 40-man roster, San Diego placed left-hander Adrian Morejón on the 60-day injured list. Morejón underwent Tommy John surgery last April and will miss at least the first two months of this season as he continues his recovery.