The contract extension for Franklin Gutierrez is done. There is going to be a 10:30 a.m. press conference at Safeco Field. So that means I need to get on my way up there.
The deal reportedly is a four-year extension worth in the $20-million range, with a possible option for a fifth year. That at least will cover Gutierrez’ three arbitration years plus one year of free agency.
He’s being rewarded for his extraordinary defense in center field, and emerging offensive ability. Gutierrez, 27 next month, batted .283 with 18 homers and 70 RBI and 85 runs scored over 153 games and 565 at-bats in his first season with the Mariners. They acquired him from the Indians in December, 2008 in the huge three-team trade with the Tribe and Mets. The Mariners sent Sean Green, J.J. Putz and Jeremy Reed to the Mets and Luis Valbuena to the Indians. The Mets sent Mike Carp, Endy Chavez, Aaron Heilman, Jason Vargas and minor leaguers Ezequiel Carrera and Maikel Cleto to the Mariners. The Mets also sent Joe Smith to the Indians.