Arbitration hearings can be messy. People's feelings get hurt, there's bad blood, and they can leave a lasting feeling of distrust.
Good thing Padres general manager A.J. Preller avoids them like bad trades.
As he's done every year, Preller and the Padres avoided a hearing with any of their arbitration-eligible players. Mike Clevinger and Matt Strahm agreed to deals a while ago. On Friday, the deadline to have an agreement, San Diego locked up their five remaining cases:
OF Tommy Pham - $8.9 million
RHP Dinelson Lamet - $4.2 million
RHP Emilio Pagan - $1.57 million
C Victor Caratini - $1.3 million
RHP Dan Altavilla - $850,000
The largest raise went to Lamet, who upped his 2021 salary by $2.9 million. That's what happens when you have a breakout year and finish 4th in the National League Cy Young Award balloting.
Pham received a $1 million bump in his final year of arbitration. He lost most of his 2020 season to injuries then suffered a stab wound in an altercation after the playoffs ended. Pham is expected to be fully healthy by the time Spring Training starts.
Now that the Padres have that bit of business taken care of they can put more focus on filling out the roster (they're still looking for a couple arms and bench pieces) and, most importantly, engaging further in contract extension talks with Fernando Tatis Jr.
That's a topic we covered extensively in this week's OnFriar Podcast: