The Brewers were expected to trade salary proposals with three arbitration-eligible players today, but now there's no need as they've agreed to a one-year, $5 million contract with John Axford and Tom Haudricourt is reporting they've also got deals in place with Marco Estrada (one year, $1.955 million) and Burke Badenhop (one year, $1.55 million). Axford, who was eligible for arbitration for the first time, made $525,000 last season. Estrada made $486,000 and was also eligible for the first time, while Badenhop made $1.075 million in his second arbitration season.
Matt Swartz of MLB Trade Rumors predicted Axford would get $5.1 million for 2013, so his deal is right in line with the expectation. He guessed low in estimating Estrada would get $1.6 million, and had Badenhop projected for the same amount (missing by just $50,000).
There had been some conversation about the Brewers trying to sign Axford to a long term deal to provide more payroll certainty going forward and that still could happen, but for now the two sides have their work done for this season.
Axford enters the 2013 season second on the Brewers' all time list with 106 saves, needing 27 more to tie Dan Plesac for first. He's also tied for tenth in franchise history with 206 career relief appearances. Across baseball since Opening Day 2010 only Jose Valverde (110), Heath Bell (109) and Jonathan Papelbon (106) have more saves.
With these three under contract the Brewers have resolved all of their possible arbitration cases.