The deal, as reported by Buster Olney of ESPN, is guaranteed at 9.5 million dollars for each of the next two seasons before a 4.5 million dollar buyout is instituted before the 2016 season where Arroyo has the potential to earn 11 million dollars if his slider is still swooping and swerving.
With the acquisition of Arroyo, the Diamondbacks have continued their massive revamp of their roster that is forced to compete for the National League West crown with the Los Angeles Dodgers, who seemingly have a bottomless pit full of cash. Along with Arroyo, the team has acquired slugging outfielder Mark Trumbo and shutdown closer Addison Reed.
Bronson Arroyo arrived to the Reds in what has been described as one of the most lopsided trades in franchise history. The club sent the immensely powerful outfielder, Wily Mo Pena, to the Boston Red Sox, in exchange for a pitcher that wore cornrows and his gangly body represented a rock star more than a workhorse starting pitcher. Eight years later, Arroyo leaves as one of the most dependable starters in the game today.
In just under three weeks, Arroyo will be turning 37 years old; yet unlike other pitchers of this generation, his arm will not crumble beneath the high levels of stress he has put it under. As Reds fans are familiar with, Arroyo seemingly uses as little effort as possible when throwing the ball, baffling batters with pitches that just never quite reach home plate quick enough.
His calling card is certainly his durability. In his first year with the Reds in 2006, Arroyo tossed over 240 innings for a club that was in desperate need of stability in the starting rotation; along with that, he earned his only career All-Star bid.
Going back to 2005, his final year as a member of the Boston Red Sox, Arroyo has now thrown nine consecutive seasons of 200 innings. (Yes, I’m rounding up from 2011. He threw 199 innings, but it’s not as if he missed time on the disabled list. He took the ball when he certainly should have been on there, so he deserves some credit.)
The key to this sustained success has been his well-documented, high-level workout routines. A weight lifter from a young age, one would never guess about Arroyo’s dedication to the weight room by looking over his 6’4”, 195-pound frame. Being in phenomenal shape has been the sole reason that Arroyo has never had to go on the disabled list his entire professional career. Arroyo himself even claims that he’s never missed a start going all the way back to Little League!
Through the ups (14 complete games; six shutouts as a Red) and downs (multiple times being massacred north of the border in Toronto), Arroyo has undoubtedly left his mark on the Reds franchise. There is no question that Arroyo is happy to stay in the National League, if for no other reason that the opportunity to continue to step into the batter’s box. When he dug in at Chase Field in 2012, he even hit a line drive home run into the first few rows out in left field.
After weeks of uncertainty about what his future held for him, Arroyo finally got his deal. The Reds must now attempt to replace not only a great pitcher, but also an even better person in the locker room.
We all wish Bronson the best of luck out in the desert as a member of the Diamondbacks…as long as he doesn’t come back to bite us.