7:12pm: Collmenter will receive a $1.2MM base salary in 2017 and can earn up to $1.2MM via incentives as well, tweets O’Brien.
6:18pm: The Braves have agreed to a one-year deal to avoid arbitration with right-hander Josh Collmenter, reports David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (via Twitter). Atlanta acquired Collmenter in a rare September trade, and the longtime D-backs hurler spent enough time in the minor leagues this year to delay his path to free agency by a season. He’ll remain under control with the Braves into 2017 now and can serve as either a rotation piece or a swingman should the Braves add multiple arms to their rotation mix this winter, as general manager John Coppolella has stated as a goal. Details of Collmenter’s contract aren’t yet known, but MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz projected a $2.2MM salary for the Sparta Group client.
[Related: Atlanta Braves Depth Chart]
The 30-year-old Collmenter (31 in February) found himself released by the D-backs earlier this summer after recording a 4.84 ERA in 22 1/3 innings. Arizona’s 2015 Opening Day starter latched on with the Cubs on a minors pact and pitched well in four Triple-A starts for Chicago before Atlanta picked him up in a trade that didn’t grab many headlines but could yield benefits in the season to come. Collmenter went on to three starts for Atlanta in the season’s final weeks, posting a 2.37 ERA with 7.6 K/9, 2.4 BB/9 and a 42.3 percent ground-ball rate in 19 innings. In his career, Collmenter has a 3.50 earned run average, 6.3 K/9, 2.2 BB/9 and a 36.1 percent grounder rate in 678 1/3 innings — all coming with Arizona and Atlanta.
As it stands, the Braves are set to enter the 2017 campaign with Julio Teheran atop their rotation, but the outlook behind him is decidedly less certain. Mike Foltynewicz has likely pitched his way into a spot, and former top prospect Matt Wisler logged 156 1/3 innings despite a lackluster 5.00 ERA. Fellow top prospect Aaron Blair also struggled in the Majors, so he’s probably not guaranteed anything heading into Spring Training next year. Other internal options for the Braves include John Gant, Tyrell Jenkins, Williams Perez and Rob Whalen, but as noted above, Coppolella appears set on deepening his team’s rotation picture with the addition of at least two starters (either via trade or free agency).