A.J. Ellis signs with Dodgers, avoids arbitration

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-US PRESSWIRE

The Dodgers avoided salary arbitration with their starting catcher on Friday, signing A.J. Ellis for $2 million for 2013.

Dodgers catcher A.J. Ellis enjoyed success in his first full major league season in 2012, and on Friday he reaped the financial rewards. The backstop reached agreement with the club on a one-year, $2 million contract, avoiding arbitration, per Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.

Ellis was one of 133 players to file for salary arbitration on Tuesday, along with teammate Ronald Belisario.

Ellis hit .270 with 13 home runs in 133 games, and led the team in both on-base percentage (.373) and walks (65). With two years, 151 days of service time, the 31-year old was eligible for salary arbitration as a Super Two, in the top 22% of players with between two and three years of service time.

After reviewing comparable players to Ellis, I guessed a salary of $3 million. Matt Swartz at MLB Trade Rumors predicted a salary $1.7 million for Ellis.Translation: I was way off.

The Dodgers still haven't gone to an arbitration hearing since 2007, with Joe Beimel.

With the signings of Ellis and Belisario (for $1.45 million), the Dodgers now have $231.95 million committed to 25 players for 2013, including Tony Gwynn Jr., who is currently not on the 40-man roster.

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