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David Price avoids arbitration with Tigers, signs for record $19.75 million

David Price has signed the richest arbitration contract in the history of the game.

Leon Halip/Getty Images

Starting pitcher David Price and the Detroit Tigers avoided arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a record one-year, $19.75 million deal.

Price posted a 3.59 ERA with 9.5 strikeouts per nine and 1.7 walks per nine in 11 starts for the Tigers last season after they acquired him from the Tampa Bay Rays at the trade deadline. Price pitched well in his lone postseason start, allowing two runs in eight innings in a loss to the Baltimore Orioles in the American League Division Series.

Entering his final season of team control, Price was projected by MLB Trade Rumors to earn $18.9 million, far more than any other arbitration-eligible player this season. The 30-year-old left-hander owns a 3.21 ERA/121 ERA+ with 8.5 SO/9 and 2.4 BB/9 since breaking into the majors in 2008, just one year after the Rays selected him with the first overall pick in the 2007 draft.

Price's best season came as a 26-year-old in 2012, when he finished with a 2.56 ERA/150 ERA+ and won the AL Cy Young award.