Braves News: AJ Minter agrees to one year deal, avoiding arbitration

Eric Cole
Atlanta Braves relief pitcher AJ Minter established what might be his best season so far. (Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images)
Atlanta Braves relief pitcher AJ Minter established what might be his best season so far. (Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images) /
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The Atlanta Braves have a bit of work to do today as they try to avoid arbitration with several players on their roster before the deadline to file figures later today.. Earlier today, they agreed to terms with Dennis Santana on a one year, $1 million deal that allows them to avoid one arbitration hearing.

AJ Minter is the second most prominent name amongst the Braves’ arbitration eligibles and in the past, he has been amenable to settling before the filing deadline. This year was no different as Minter and the Braves settled on a one year deal.

The Atlanta Braves got a bit of a deal with AJ Minter

Coming into the offseason, the general consensus was that Minter was in line to get around $5 million in arbitration. Considering how good he has been in the Braves bullpen, that amount was already going to be a quality deal for the Braves.

However, with the Braves firmly over the luxury tax threshold, Minter did them a real solid by agreeing to a one year deal significantly below that $5 million estimate. Nothing is certain when it comes to how much Minter would have gotten in arbitration if it had gone to a hearing, it seems clear that the two sides weren’t far enough apart to head to a hearing and hash things out. The Braves need Minter happy and to perform well and he has seemed quite happy in his role on the team.

Minter will now hope to help lead a Night Shift 2.0

While he wasn’t the team’s “closer” last season, Minter was their best bullpen arm from start to finish as he accumulated 2.1 fWAR in 70 innings pitched (75 total appearances). With Kenley Jansen moving on, the Braves are going to need to rely on Minter as well as Raisel Iglesias in high leverage situations.

Fortunately for the Braves, Minter has a strong track record of performance and while some of the names have changed with guys like Luke Jackson and Will Smith on different teams and Tyler Matzek recovering from surgery, the “Night Shift” appears poised to be one of the best bullpen groups in the majors yet again.

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