Peterson finally on board, Os arbitration update
Rick Peterson officially agreed to join the Baltimore Orioles organization on Monday and is expected to serve as the newly-created pitching development coordinator, a hybrid of the Minor League pitching coordinator position that will provide added responsibilities in areas of players development and the farm system.
The long-rumored announcement news was reported as a done deal by MLB.com analyst Jim Duquette, and confirmed by a baseball source to MLB.com. Monday’s news ends a lengthy negotiation process in which Peterson was interviewed several times over a month-and-a-half period before the one-year deal was reached.
Executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette was optimistic throughout the process, saying last week that he felt the two sides would be able to reach a deal. The patience and persistence paid off, netting the Orioles a highly-respected pitching guru in Peterson, who is known for implementing techniques that focus on reducing injury risk. A former pitching coach with the Oakland Athletics, New York Mets and Milwaukee Brewers, Peterson was let go after the 2010 season when the Brewers made a managerial change.
Peterson will assume the job vacated by Alan Dunn –who left the organization in June 2011 to accept Louisiana State University’s pitching coach job– although the exact details of his new title and additional responsibilities are still a work in progress.
With Tuesday’s noon ET arbitration deadline looming, the Orioles avoided arbitration with two players today: Jim Johnson and Darren O’Day. Johnson will get a substantial raise in 2012, agreeing to a one-year deal worth 2.625 million. He avoided arbitration last season as one of a handful of players eligible for Super Two status (based on service time), and made $975,000. With the starting pitching depth the Orioles have added, both Duquette and manager Buck Showalter confirmed last week that the organization views Johnson as a bullpen arm, and he’s a strong candidate to take over closing duties. The Baltimore Sun was the first to report the pair of arbitration agreements on Monday.
The Orioles still have four arbitration-eligible players: Jeremy Guthrie, Adam Jones, Robert Andino and Brad Bergesen. If they can’t reach an agreement, each side submits a figure and a hearing is set for next month. However, the two sides can continue to negotiate up to that hearing as well.