The Orioles came to terms with two of their eight arbitration-eligible players on Thursday.
According to multiple reports, first baseman and outfielder Mark Trumbo and relief pitcher Brad Brach both agreed to contracts to avoid salary arbitration. Trumbo agreed to a $9.15 million salary for 2016 while Brach will make $1.25 million on a one-year contract.
The 29-year-old Trumbo was acquired from Seattle earlier this offseason, but it remains to be seen what his main role will be with Baltimore. Strongest defensively at first base, Trumbo could be the replacement for free-agent slugger Chris Davis or he could serve as Baltimore’s primary designated hitter if Davis re-signs.
Also capable of playing the corner outfield spots, Trumbo hit .262 with 22 home runs, 64 runs batted in, and a .759 on-base plus slugging percentage split between Arizona and the Mariners last season. The right-handed batter slugged 29 or more home runs in three straight seasons from 2011-2013.
In his second season with the Orioles, the 29-year-old Brach posted a career-best 2.72 ERA in 79 1/3 innings and struck out 10.1 batters per nine innings pitched. The right-hander also held left-handed hitters to a .184 average and a .534 OPS, making him a valuable piece in Buck Showalter’s bullpen.
Negotiations continue with left-handed pitchers Zach Britton and Brian Matusz, right-handers Miguel Gonzalez and Chris Tillman, and infielders Ryan Flaherty and Manny Machado. The sides will exchange salary figures on Friday if agreements can’t be struck. Arbitration hearings would then be scheduled for next month, but sides may continue negotiating until then.