Phillies Avoid Arbitration With Key Reliever

The Phillies have avoided salary arbitration with reliever Luis Garcia. The two sides agreed on a one-year contract worth $1.2 million, a source said Friday.

Previously, the Phillies avoided arbitration with catcher Cameron Rupp, when he agreed to a one-year deal worth $2.05 million.

The Phillies have two arbitration-eligible players remaining: infielders Cesar Hernandez and Maikel Franco. Arbitration figures will be exchanged between the two sides later on Friday and hearings will be held next month, if needed. The two sides can settle at any time before a hearing.

Garcia, who turns 31 later this month, had his best season in 2017. He added a splitter to his power fastball-slider mix and posted a 2.65 ERA in 66 games. He gave up just four earned runs in 22 1/3 innings over his final 23 games, and three of those runs came in one outing.

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Back in October, new manager Gabe Kapler mentioned Garcia as a player who had caught his attention. Consistency had long eluded the hard-throwing right-hander. He found it in 2017 and will look to continue it in 2018.

Garcia made $550,000 in 2017.

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