David Price is being rewarded quite handsomely for his stellar Cy Young-winning performance in 2012, as he and the Tampa Bay Rays have reportedly avoided arbitration and agreed to a deal worth more than $10 million, according to the Tampa Bay Times. As a Super-Two, this was Price's second year of arbitration eligibility. He will be eligible for two more seasons before qualifying for free agency.
The 27-year-old left-hander had the best season of his career in 2012, leading the American League in wins (20) and ERA (2.56). Price narrowly edged out Detroit Tigers' ace and 2011 Cy Young winner Justin Verlander for the award this season. It also makes him a tough case for arbitration, as players of his age, quality and accomplishments are so rare. And the few who do compare are often locked down to multi-year deals instead of going year-to-year.
The absence of James Shields means Price is now the most senior man in the Rays' formidable rotation. It also makes it likely that he will be the highest-paid player on the team.