Jan. 20, 2011GIANTS PAGE GIANTS VIDEOMychael Urban
The Giants whittled their list of arbitration-eligible players to one Thursday by agreeing to terms on a one-year deal for 2011 with left-handed reliever Javier Lopez, CSNBayArea.com has confirmed.The remaining arb-eligible player is outfielder Andres Torres, whom CSNBayArea.com was told should be signed to a one-year deal late Thursday or Friday.A team source also confirmed a report by the Bay Area News Group that it is close to signing righty Jeff Suppan to a minor-league deal that includes an invitation to big-league camp.
Lopez, who was acquired at mid-season in a trade with the Pirates, posted a 1.42 ERA in 27 regular-season appearances for the Giants and was even better in the playoffs while serving almost exclusively as a lefty-vs.-lefty specialist.REWIND: Giants trade Martinez, Bowker to Pirates for Lopez
You could go down the list and name a number of guys who proved to be invaluable during the postseason, Giants general manager Brian Sabean said shortly after the World Series parade, and Lopez would have to be right there at the top of that list. Lopez, 33, struck out both batters he faced over two appearances in the National League Division Series against Atlanta; posted a 2.08 ERA with four strikeouts over five appearances (4 13 innings) in the NL Championship Series against the Phillies; and struck out both batters he faced over two appearances against the Rangers in the World Series.Financial terms of the deal could not be immediately verified, but Lopez on Tuesday submitted a proposed salary of 2.875 million via the arbitration process, while the Giants countered with an offer of 2 million.Torres, 32, batted .268 with 16 home runs and 63 RBIs in 139 games during the best season of his career in 2010. He submitted a proposed salary of 2.6 million and is said to be nearing a deal close to the midpoint between that number and the 1.8 million the Giants offered.Suppan, 36, split last season between the Brewers and Cardinals, going 0-2 with a 7.84 ERA in 15 games (two starts) for Milwaukee before being moved to St. Louis and closing the season by going 3-6 with a 3.84 ERA in 15 games (13 starts).Expected to sign a deal that would pay him 1 million should he make the Opening Day roster, Suppan, who would essentially provide insurance in the event that one of San Franciscos five established starters suffers an injury, likely will have an opt-out clause in the contract that would allow him to become a free agent again it appears that he wont make the team late in camp.Todd Wellemeyer had a similar deal last season and broke camp as the No. 5 starter.The Lopez deal was first reported by the San Francisco Chronicle's John Shea on his Twitter feed.