Broxton is one of the best relievers in baseball. This represents his second year of arbitration, which means the Dodgers have set their price for his final arbitration-eligible season as well. Broxton will make $11M total. Papelbon is also in his second year of arbitration and he agreed to a new contract worth $9.35M. If the Dodgers motivation was to avoid an arbitration award similar to Papelbon’s $6.5M last season, then they did a pretty fantastic job.
Broxton has 317 career innings, a 2.92 ERA, and a 2.83 xFIP. Batters miss his pitches at a high frequency and when they do put it in play, it’s generally a groundball. He’s basically the perfect reliever. Even if you think WAR and the WAR-to-dollars translation generally leave high-leverage relievers undervalued, Broxton’s last three years average is around $9.3M. 60% of that is a little under $6M. And this is without noting that Broxton wasn’t a full-time closer until this season.
Ethier is actually in his second year of arbitration too, but he actually has an additional two remaining since he reached Super-Two status last year. He will make roughly $15M over the next two years, which works out to an average of ~$7.5M – or depending on the cost of a win, 1.5-to-2 wins – he’s been good for that every year of his Majors career. He turns 28 next season and it seems unlikely he’ll be -16 runs in the outfield again.
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