J.J. Putz Signs On With Diamondbacks, Will Close

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J.J. Putz Signs Two-Year Contract With Diamondbacks

It was reported earlier Monday that the Arizona Diamondbacks were nearing an agreement with free agent reliever J.J. Putz, and sure enough they've now gotten all the way there.

Putz and the Diamondbacks have agreed on a two-year contract with a third-year, 2013 option. The deal comes with $10 million guaranteed. It's believed that Putz found the Diamondbacks appealing because he lives in the area, but Arizona will also give him the opportunity to go back to closing. Putz has served as a setup man with the Mets and White Sox the last two years, but closed for the Mariners between 2006-2008, and enjoys the role.

Putz is set to undergo a physical exam Monday and Tuesday, after which the deal should become official. The hard-throwing righty will try to help solidify a bullpen that last year posted an ERA of 5.74, with 62 home runs allows.

Update: Ken Rosenthal has the contract breakdown. Putz will earn $4 million in 2011 and $4.5 million in 2012, with a $1.5m 2013 buyout and a $6.5 million 2013 club option. In other words, he will earn a minimum of $10 million and a maximum of $15 million.

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J.J. Putz Close To Signing With Diamondbacks As Closer

The MLB Winter Meetings are underway and Diamondbacks general manager Kevin Towers has been as busy as anybody in baseball, pulling a Mark Reynolds trade while soon thereafter signing Melvin Mora and declaring that Justin Upton probably won't be traded. But make no mistake: Towers isn't done, and according to reports, he's deep in negotiations with free agent reliever J.J. Putz.

Attempting to reconstruct a disastrous team bullpen, Towers already landed two relievers in the Reynolds trade, and has said that he intends to leave the Winter Meetings with a closer. Putz could serve as that closer, as he has 106 career saves.

According to Yahoo!'s Tim Brown, Putz and the Diamondbacks are talking about a two-year contract with a 2013 option. Putz will be looking for a raise from 2010's $3 million base salary, but shouldn't command a whole lot more than that, as he was a setup man for the White Sox.

In a big bounceback year, Putz posted a 2.83 ERA last season, with 65 strikeouts and 15 walks in 54 innings. He was an ace closer for the Mariners between 2006-2007, and combines a mid- to high-90s fastball with a capable slider and a devastating split.

Be sure to follow along over at AZ Snakepit.

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