More details on Escobar deal

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Escobar posted this photo to his Twitter account — @kelvimescobar.

Kelvin Escobar was all smiles Thursday after finalizing a Minor League contract with the Brewers that includes an invitation to big league camp and a chance to mount a big-time comeback in the Brewers’ bullpen.

And why wouldn’t be smile? Besides being a great story, it could prove a rather lucrative endeavor.

A baseball source told me Escobar would earn a base salary of $1.1 million in the Majors, plus up to $1.1 million more in incentives. I don’t have the precise breakdown on those incentives, but they include performance bonuses (which can include bumps for things like games finished or appearances), roster bonuses (for days with the big league club) and awards bonuses, including a payout for winning Comeback Player of the Year.

I’m told the deal also includes a May 1 “out,” allowing Escobar to opt for free agency if he’s not in the big leagues by that date. But he’s not thinking about that — Escobar says he feels healthy and strong, and told fans via his colorful Twitter account (@kelvimescobar) that, “It’s been a while but I feel great and know I can help this team.”

His success will more likely than not hinge on his health. Brewers assistant GM Gord Ash said the club’s Latin American scouts filed favorable reports on Escobar’s performance in the Venezuelan Winter League, where he touched the mid-90s with his fastball. But Escobar has a long medical history that includes elbow and more recently shoulder issues. Because of that shoulder, he’s been limited to one Major League appearance since 2007, and he has not pitched in the U.S. since an injury ended a 2010 bid with the Mets before it began.

By the way, I asked Ash whether he would confirm those financial terms, and he declined. The Brewers typically don’t divulge the dollars associated with their signings.

Here’s a link to Brewers.com for the original story about Escobar’s deal.

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Follow me on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy

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