Marlins Sign Uggla to 1-Year $7.8MM Deal

The Marlins have agreed to a 1-year $7.8MM deal with Dan Uggla, avoiding what could have been an ugly arbitration hearing (aren’t they all?). Despite the edict to spend more money, the Fish are apparently still shopping Uggla around. But, at this point, it’s very likely that Uggla will be the opening day second baseman.

Josh Johnson Signs a 4-Year Deal

The Marlins and Josh Johnson have agreed to a 4-year $39MM deal which buys out his first two years of free agency. The deal matches JJ’s original demand of a Greinke-like deal (4 years at $38MM) which suggests the Marlins relented after the recent pressure from MLB and MLBPA.

From ESPN:

“I’m excited,” Johnson said. “It sets up me and my family for life. One of the best parts is knowing where I’m going to be the next four years. I won’t have to hear about any trade rumors or anything like that. I’m happy to be in South Florida.”

The contract buys out the final two years of salary arbitration eligibility and the first two years of free agency for Johnson, who has a 34-16 record and a 3.40 ERA in parts of five seasons with the Marlins.

With Hanley Ramirez anchoring the offense, Josh Johnson now becomes the long-term ace of the pitching staff as the Fish make another run to the playoffs and as they look towards opening the new ballpark in 2012.

Update: A few more details. JJ will earn a mere $3.75 million in 2010, $7.75 million in 2011 and $13.75 million in 2012 and 2013. Incentives include $50K for making the All-Star team, $500K for wining the Cy Young and $1MM for World Series MVP.

Matt Lindstrom Heading to Houston

Dethroned closer Matt Lindstrom is heading to the Houston Astros (literally, he is on his way to Houston for a physical). Will update once we hear who the Marlins got in return.

Update: Peter Gammons is reporting that the Marlins received two minor leaguers and a player to be named later.

Update 2: Minor leaguers coming back to the Marlins are RHP Robert Bono and SS Luis Bryan.

JJ’s Agent: No Deal

ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting that negotiations between the Marlins and Josh Johnson have reached an impasse.

Agent Matt Sosnick told ESPN.com that negotiations between the Marlins and Johnson have reached an “impasse,” and Johnson expects to play under a one-year deal in 2010. Johnson will be eligible for free agency after the 2011 season, and a failure to reach agreement on a multiyear contract would probably force the Marlins to explore a trade before then.

“Based on our conversations, there’s no chance of doing a long-term deal with the Marlins,” Sosnick said. “We made it clear that it was going to be this year or it wasn’t going to happen. It was now or never. And the Marlins agreed.”

Apparently JJ wanted a 4-year deal but the Marlins were only willing to go up to 3 years meaning they would only buy out one of his free agency years. Let’s hope this is just early posturing by both sides.

Fredi Gets an Extension

Just before the first team workout, the Marlins have announced that they’ve extended Fredi Gonzalez’s deal through the 2011 seasons. The next 3 seasons, hopefully leading to the first season in the new ballpark, will require stability and growth as payroll will probably remain low. Despite some criticism, Fredi has done a good job with a young team and, most importantly, does not yell at the owner in the middle of games.

Marlins Willing to Sign Pudge at a Big Discount

After hearing that the Fish have no chance of signing Pudge Rodriguez, we are obviously not too surprised to find out that it’s all a ploy to convince the still-unsigned catcher to return at a huge discount. Pudge is looking for something around $5 millions while the Marlins could see an incentive-based $1 million deal.

The question is if Rodriguez’ is willing to accept a six-figure base salary and modest incentive package. The source said even though owner Jeffrey Loria is on board with a Rodriguez reunion, it would have to happen for around $1 million, including performance bonuses.

No doubt that Pudge will be an upgrade from Rabelo so let’s hope this dry market, which has left several big name players without a contract, allows an opportunistic front office to bring him back.

Nolasco, Amezaga and Ross Sign; Uggla Headed to Arb

The Marlins were able to close the gap with Ricky Nolasco, Alfredo Amezaga and Cody Ross.

Florida reached agreement on a one-year deal with Ricky Nolasco early Tuesday afternoon, according to a baseball source.

The 26-year-old right-hander will earn $2.4 million, plus he can earn another $50,000 in incentives. The sides had been about $200,000 apart in recent days. Locking up Nolasco means both sides avoid an arbitration hearing.

And…

The Marlins have avoided salary arbitration with outfielder Cody Ross, who agreed to a 1-year deal for $2,225,000 shortly before Tuesday’s noon deadline.

That leaves Dan Uggla unsigned. Uggla has put up monster numbers in his first three years and rightfully believes he will get a huge number in arbitration.

Update: Uggla wants $5.35 million

Cantu and Hermida Get Big Raises

Marlins avoided arbitration with both Jorge Cantu and Jeremy Hermida:

Cantu’s deal is for $3.5 million, and it comes after he made $600,000, including $100,000 in incentives, last year. Hermida’s deal is for $2.25 million with a chance to earn another $50,000 in incentives.