Sosa avoids arbitration, signs with Braves

The Braves have signed their last remaining player eligible for arbitration, inking a deal with pitcher Jorge Sosa. Bill Shanks has more.

The Atlanta Braves have reached an agreement with pitcher Jorge Sosa on a one-year, $2.2 million dollar contract for the 2006 season.

Sosa, acquired from the Tampa Bay Devil Rays late in spring training last year for Nick Green, was 13-3 last season with a 2.55 ERA. He began the season in the Atlanta bullpen, and went 3-0 with a 2.31 ERA in 24 games. But after the Braves lost Mike Hampton and John Thomson to injuries in May, they moved Sosa into the rotation. He was terrific, going 10-3 with a 2.62 ERA in 20 starts, 98 hits allowed in 107.2 innings, 31 earned runs, 45 walks, and 68 strikeouts.

As of now, the plan is for Sosa to remain in the starting rotation for the upcoming season. He has some incentives in his contract worth $300,000 that can be reached if he continues as a starter. But with the bullpen having some questions and a packed rotation, it's still possible Sosa could return to the bullpen.

Bill Shanks is the author of Scout's Honor: The Bravest Way To Build A Winning Team, a look inside the Braves‘ traditional scouting and player development philosophies. You can email Bill at

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