The Los Angeles Angels have reportedly avoided arbitration with starting third baseman Alberto Callaspo by agreeing to a deal worth close to $9 million over two years, according to Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com. The deal covers Callaspo's final year of arbitration eligibility and one free agent year. Gonzalez stipulates that the deal is "essentially done", as Callaspo must still pass a physical. He also adds that there are no options attached to the deal for a third year.
The 29-year-old Callaspo became the Angels' starting third baseman after coming to LA from the Kansas City Royals in July of 2010. After an uneven transition, Callaspo has helped solidify the left side of the Angels' infield, hitting a respectable .270/.349/.368 in over 1,000 plate appearances over the past two seasons.
The deal seems like quite a bargain for the Angels, as Callaspo's steady play while in Anaheim compares favorably to players who will draw much bigger paychecks. Kevin Youkilis, for example, signed a one-year deal with the New York Yankees for $12 million just last month. Not only is Callaspo four years younger, but his level of production over the last two years isn't far below that of Youkilis.