Walker Buehler has signed a 2-year, $8 million contract with the Dodgers to avoid arbitration until 2023, and the deal includes incentives that could take the contract to a maximum of two years and $12.125 million.
Last month, it was reported that Buehler filed at $4.15 million in arbitration with the Dodgers filing at $3.3 million, so it seems like the two sides settled around the midway point for 2021 when factoring in a prorated signing bonus.
Where this seems like a bargain is the second year, as Buehler would be in line for only $4.25 million guaranteed (including prorated signing bonus), a measly raise of just ~$500k or so. While the incentives could take it up to a more reasonable $8.375 million, getting guaranteed money was the draw for Buehler here as obviously the Dodgers don’t mind paying him an undermarket incentive-laden deal.
As a Super Two player, Buehler had four years of arbitration and this buys out his first two years, so the Dodgers can avoid any potential headache next off-season with their “secret” staff ace.
The Dodgers have now settled all their arbitration cases except for perpetual, yet unlikely, playoff hero Austin Barnes.