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Bobby Parnell, Mets avoid arbitration with $3.7-million deal

Bobby Parnell of the Mets walks off the

Bobby Parnell of the Mets walks off the field after the ninth inning against the Atlanta Braves at Citi Field. (July 22, 2013) Credit: Jim McIsaac

Bobby Parnell, who declared that he will be ready to start the season and finish games, agreed to a one-year deal with the Mets Friday, avoiding salary arbitration.

The club also reached agreements with Daniel Murphy and Eric Young Jr. That left Lucas Duda and Dillon Gee as the only Mets eligible for arbitration.

Murphy made a significant jump to $5.7 million from $2.925 million in 2013, when he hit .286 with 13 home runs and 78 RBIs and played in 161 games. Other teams often bring him up in trade talks but he is one of the stalwarts of the Mets' lineup.

Young, who led the National League in steals with 46, agreed to $1.85 million.

Parnell is a particularly interesting case for the Mets, given that he is coming off neck surgery Sept. 10 and was the team's closer before he was injured. He agreed to a $3.7-million deal, with an additional $50,000 if he appears in 60 games.

That represents a raise of $1.7 million for Parnell, who appeared to finally fulfill his hard-throwing potential last season, emerging as the closer and converting 22 of 26 save opportunities through July 30. But he missed the rest of the season because of a herniated disc.

During a conference call with reporters Thursday, Parnell said he feels healthy and that he will gradually augment his throwing regimen with weight training.

He emphasized that he still considers himself the closer and will continue to do so until he hears otherwise from the Mets.

"I feel there's plenty of time to get into baseball shape," he said, alluding to the season opener March 31 against the Nationals at Citi Field. "At this time, I don't feel there's any question I will be ready."

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