Kelley L Cox - USA Today Sports

Joaquin Arias signs two-year deal with San Francisco Giants

The San Francisco Giants avoided arbitration with their utility man Joaquin Arias on Thursday, signing him to a two-year, $2.6 million deal.

Andrew Baggarly of CSN Bay Area reported the deal.

The Giants avoided arbitration with Joaquin Arias on Thursday, agreeing to terms with the versatile backup infielder on a two-year contract that will guarantee him $2.6 million.

CSN Bay Area also learned from a source that Arias’ contract includes some performance incentives.”

Arias is the type of versatile player who can make a big difference in National League games and especially in NL playoff races. He proved as much in 2012, batting .270/.304/.389 in 112 games and logging a significant amount of time in the playoffs for a Giants team that eventually won the World Series. His numbers in 2013 declinedsomewhat, as injuries held him to 102 games in which he batted .271/.284/.342.

It’s hard to find utility men who are solid defenders and competent at the plate. More often than not, an NL team will trade some production at the plate for a guy who’s good with the leather in more than one spot (see Punto, Nick).

Arias certainly won’t overwhelm anybody with his offensive production, but he brings more at the plate than most utility guys. That makes this a nice signing for the Giants.

Tags: Joaquin Arias San Francisco Giants