For those keeping score, here are the details of the incentives tacked on to outfielder Mark Kotsay’s $800,000 contract:
He can earn an extra $450,000 in all — $25,000 each for 125 and 150 plate appearances, $50,000 each for 175 and 200 plate appearances, $50,000 each for 40, 60, 80 and 100 games started, and $100,000 if he’s on the Major League roster on July 1.
The Brewers just formally announced their one-year deal with Mark Kotsay, including the corresponding roster move necessary to get him onto a full 40-man roster. The victim is right-hander Roque Mercedes, who was designated for assignment to clear a spot.
Mercedes’ second stint with the Brewers lasted less than two months. He originally signed with the Brewers out of the Dominican Republic in 2005 but was traded along with outfielder Cole Gillespie to the D-backs for Felipe Lopez in 2009. The Brewers re-acquired Mercedes, now 24, via the waiver wire in December.
As reported yesterday by SI.com and the Associated Press, Kotsay will earn a $800,000 base salary in 2011, plus up to $450,000 in incentives.
In other moves, the Brewers agreed to 2011 terms with pitchers Mike McClendon and Rule 5 Draft pick Pat Egan. Twenty-six players on the 40-man roster are officially signed for this season.
Veteran Mark Kotsay’s one-year deal with the Brewers will reportedly pay an $800,000 base salary and up to $450,000 more in incentives. All that’s missing is the formal announcement.
SI.com’s Jon Heyman reported the terms of Kotsay’s pending contract on Thursday afternoon, but the Brewers did not announce it as of the close of business and did not have anything planned for Thursday night.
The wait could be related to the team’s full 40-man roster. Not including Kotsay, that roster included 23 pitchers, four catchers, eight infielders and five outfielders.
Somebody will have to go to make way for Kotsay, a 35-year-old who spent the last season and a half with the White Sox. He gives the Brewers a left-handed bench bat with a bit of pop (Kotsay hit eight home runs last season in 327 at-bats) and is most likely to play the outfield, since regular first baseman Prince Fielder rarely misses an inning.
According to Heyman, Kotsay can earn a $100,000 roster bonus in addition to his base salary, plus another $350,000 in other incentives.
The Brewers were working Tuesday to finalize a contract for veteran outfielder Mark Kotsay, who would bring another left-handed bat to a righty-heavy Milwaukee roster.
The pending deal was reported by FoxSports.com, which said Kotsay would get a one-year, Major League contract. Assistant general manager Gord Ash confirmed the sides were talking but said the team was still doing its due diligence when Miller Park was shut down at 3 p.m. CT because of a coming snowstorm.
Ash said a conclusion could be reached within 24 hours, even if the offices remain closed on Wednesday. The Brewers would have to clear a spot on their full 40-man roster for Kotsay.
The 35-year-old has played parts of 14 Major League seasons for six teams and spent the second half of 2009 and all of 2010 with the White Sox. He made 359 plate appearances for Chicago last season and batted .239 with eight home runs and 31 RBIs.
Kotsay appeared mostly as a first baseman and designated hitter for the White Sox in 2010, but has a lifetime .312 average as a pinch-hitter. He was just 3-for-12 in the pinch last season.
Kotsay could back-up Prince Fielder at first base, though Fielder has played at least 157 games in five straight seasons. Kotsay would more likely fit into a somewhat crowded outfield that features All-Stars Ryan Braun and Corey Hart as fixtures at the corners.
Carlos Gomez is expected to start the season as the regular center fielder, and Kotsay would presumably compete with Chris Dickerson for left-handed at-bats. The Brewers also have switch-hitter Brandon Boggs on the 40-man roster,
but Boggs has a Minor League option remaining. (Nope, Boggs is out of options. Thanks to Jim from Brewerfan.net for pointing out my mistake.)
Among the non-roster invitees to camp is former Mariners and Mets outfielder Jeremy Reed, another left-handed hitter who can play center field.
Kotsay is represented by Greg Genske, the same agent who has been in discussions with the Brewers about arbitration-eligible second baseman Rickie Weeks.