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Dickey about to cash in on big payday

New York Mets' starting pitcher RA Dickey pitcher

New York Mets' starting pitcher RA Dickey pitcher against the Milwaukee Brewers' in the top of the 2nd inning. (Sept. 29, 2010) Credit: Newsday/J. Conrad Williams Jr.

It does not matter if R.A Dickey’s salary is settled by an arbitrator. Regardless of the final figure, the Mets' pitcher will become very rich in 2011.

The sides have exchanged figures, with Dickey asking for $4.7 million and the Mets offering $3.35.

Whatever is settled upon, either by the two sides or an arbitrator next month, Dickey wins.

The knuckleballer, who toiled in relative anonymity with the Rangers, Mariners, Twins and Brewers, has struck it rich with the Mets.

Dickey was baseball's bad luck guy, starting way back in 1996 when he coming out of college at Tennessee and was picked 18th in the first round. That should have been big money and the Rangers offered $810,000.

But when team doctors noticed upon examination that Dickey was missing the ulnar collateral ligament in his right arm, the offer dropped to $75,000. That original $810,000 bonus would have topped any annual salary Dickey made right up until last season.

In fact, Dickey, will make more in 2011 than the total of his earnings in eight years of big league service.

In 2006, Dickey made the Rangers’ starting rotation. He gave up six home runs in his first start and was sent to Triple-A. Nothing exciting ensued over the years and last January, Dickey, who was 22-28 in his career, signed a minor league contract with the Mets. Perhaps a sign of things to come was the one-hitter he threw in Triple-A on April 29, retiring 27 in a row after giving up a leadoff single. .

You know the rest of the story. It is something of a Twilight Zone episode that has yet to end.

Dickey came to New York on May 19, gave up two earned runs to the Nationals in his debut and went on to an 11-9 record and 2.84 ERA, seventh in the National League and 10th in he majors.

Now, at 36, Dickey is finally in the money.

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