Indians avoid arbitration with closer Allen, 3 others
CLEVELAND (AP) The Indians hit a grand slam of sorts, coming to contract terms on their four remaining arbitration eligible players.
The team reached agreement before Friday's deadline with Cody Allen on a $4.15 million contract for 2016. They also finalized deals with right fielder Lonnie Chisenhall ($2.725 million), starter Josh Tomlin ($2.25 million) and reliever Jeff Manship ($760,000).
Allen blossomed into one of the AL's top closers last season, recording 34 saves in 70 games. The 27-year-old had a 2.99 ERA and converted in all but four of his outings. He recorded 16 straight saves during one stretch and saved 31 of his final 34 opportunities.
Allen started slowly, going 0-2 with an 11.57 ERA in April but settled in. Left-handed hitters batted just .176 (22 of 125) against him.
Chisenhall began 2015 as Cleveland's every day third baseman, got demoted to Triple-A Columbus and finished the season playing well in right field. He batted .246 with seven homers and 44 RBIs in 106 games, but more impressive was his almost seamless transition to the outfield. He made several spectacular catches, and Chisenhall recorded three assists on Sept. 10 against Detroit, the first major league outfielder to accomplish the feat since 2007 and first Indians player to do it since Rick Manning in 1981.
Tomlin's comeback was equally impressive. After undergoing shoulder surgery in March, the 31-year-old worked his way back to the majors and went 7-2 with a 3.02 ERA in 10 starts after Aug. 15.
Manship was a non-roster invite to spring training, was called up in June and had one of the best relief seasons in club history. He finished with a 0.92 ERA in 32 games - the lowest ERA for any major league pitcher with at least 30 games.
The Indians and reliever Bryan Shaw agreed to a $2.75 million contract for next season on Thursday.