The Bucs have one player remaining in arbitration, RHP Ross Ohlendorf. They exchanged figures yesterday, and the Pirates offered $1.4M, exactly what they gave Joel Hanrahan, and Ohlendorf asked for $2.025M, according to a tweet from the Post-Gazette's Colin Dunlap.
Ohlie was 1-11 in 21 starts for the Bucs in 2010. $2M for a pitcher that won one game? Ya gotta be kidding, right?
Well, not so fast, my friends. After all, Ohlie did have a fair 4.07 ERA; J-Mac, everyone's favorite Pirate pitcher, put up a 4.02 ERA in twelve starts. So we're talking what right now is one fist of the Pirates 1-2 punch in the 2011 rotation.
Factor in his solid 2009 campaign, when he went 11-10 with a 3.92 ERA. His WARs for the past two seasons have been 1.1 and 0.9, worth $8.5M total in Fangraphs "if he were a free-agent" salary world.
So we're wondering why the Bucs are lowballing Ohlie. Like Jeff Karstens last year, he's a Super Two player that will have four total years of arbitration instead of three; maybe that's why the FO is holding down the simoleon count. Still, that's a poor excuse, at least to us.
A slightly heftier offer isn't going to geometrically escalate Ohlie's pay scale for the next three years. Only a heftier performance will do that.
Hey, they still haven't set a hearing date, and the two sides can agree to a figure between the club and player's offers before then. Give the guy $1.75-2M. He deserves it.