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Arroyo deal official

Posted by David Lefort, Boston.com Staff  January 19, 2006 12:55 PM

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The Red Sox announced today that they've reached an agreement on a three-year deal with pitcher Bronson Arroyo, avoiding arbitration. The deal is believed to be worth about $12 million.

The new deal would appear to make Arroyo more vulnerable to being dealt to a team like Tampa Bay, which is seeking affordable starting pitching and has a player the Sox covet in shortstop/leadoff hitter Julio Lugo. However, Arroyo said today that he received assurances he was not being shopped around.

"They didn't give me any guarantees," Arroyo said, "but [co-GMs] Jed [Hoyer] and Ben [Cherington] both stated to me that there was no deal on the table for me, and that at no time in the near future did they see me going anywhere."

Arroyo went 14-10 with a 4.51 ERA last season, pitching 205 1-3 innings.

He made $1,925,000 last season and asked for $4.2 million in arbitration. The team offered $2.95 million.

More comments from Arroyo today:

On going against the advice of his agents:

"I agreed to this contract with strong advice from them not to sign it, simply for the reason that I want to play in this town. I wouldn't have signed a deal in any other place."

"They basically advised me against it for one because I signed at a discount, and arbitration would have been better ... and they worried that I would be traded to a [small]-market team like the Royals or Devil Rays."

"I think they felt like I was leaving close to $4 million on the table [by taking this deal] ... they thought three years and $15 million was what they thought I'd make [if I went to arbitration each of those three years]."

"Nothing is guaranteed in life ... obviously at this point in my career it's benefiting me to have a little bit of security."

On staying in Boston:

"The reason I took a discount is because ... I want to stay here for the rest of my career."

"Everyone has their own take on the city, and how rabid the fans are. I love playing here. It's fun for me, it's exciting, every time you come to the ballpark you know you've got to bring your best, or people are going to criticize you for it."

"I enjoy that fans enjoy their baseball here and they take it seriously."

"I'm very happy and pleased that I ended up in the place I did ... In my heart, I always knew this day would come for me."

On his goals for 2006:

"My goal this year same as the last couple [of years] ... make all my starts, stay healthy, shoot for 15 wins and 200 innings ... anything above and beyond is really a bonus."

On his role on the team in 2006:

"I have not spoken to the team [about my role] ... I said in the past I'd do anything to help the team win. I've proven myself as a starter ... but if I need to pitch out of the bullpen, that's what I'll do ... but I feel confident I'll be a starter.

"I'd much rather be a starter ... I enjoy the four days in between to prepare yourself mentally, and enjoy knowing that the game is my hands from the beginning."

Material from the Associated Press and Chris Snow's story in today's Boston Globe was used in this report.

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