The last arbitration case is now wrapped up without the need for a hearing, as the Cubs and reliever Pedro Strop have settled at $5.5 million for 2017, Strop’s final year under team control. Strop was the only arbitration-eligible player who hadn’t settled before the exchange of arbitration figures back in January. He requested $6 million, and the Cubs offered $4.6 million, so Strop gets a bit over the midpoint.
By settling, the front office continues its streak of never taking a player to an arbitration hearing. You’ve gotta figure avoiding that potentially acrimonious process is worth a couple hundred thousand dollars in most cases.
Strop, 31, posted an excellent 2.85/2.91/2.77 ERA/FIP/xFIP line in 2016, but a late-season knee injury limited him to just 47.1 innings on the year, and also put him behind the 8-ball when the playoffs came around. Hopefully, with an offseason to rest up, he’ll be good to go this year. A dominant Strop in the bullpen would go a long way to confirming that the Cubs could have a silly good group out there in 2017.