Indians manager Terry Francona says he did not consider leaving struggling closer Chris Perez off the wild-card roster.
CLEVELAND - All-Star closer Chris Perez and the Cleveland Indians have locked up a one-year contract to avoid arbitration.
Perez, who had 36 saves last season, will make $4.5 million in 2012. He earned $2.25 million last season, when he developed into one of the AL's premier finishers.
The 26-year-old had 36 saves in 40 tries, ending the year with a save in his final nine chances.
Also, the Indians agreed to terms with set-up man Joe Smith on a one-year deal worth $1.75 million. He made $850,000 in 2011. Smith went 3-3 with a 2.01 ERA in 71 games.
Right-hander Justin Masterson and the Cleveland Indians avoided arbitration with a one-year contract agreement.
Masterson, the Indians' most consistent starter last year, will make $3.85 million in 2012. He made $468,400 last season.
Masterson had a breakout season in 2011, going 12-10 with a 3.21 ERA. He also led the Indians with 158 strikeouts and 33 starts. The hard-throwing 26-year-old, who was acquired in 2009 from Boston, was just 6-13 in 2010. However, he opened 5-0 last season and developed into their ace before the club traded for Ubaldo Jimenez.
The Indians once considered moving Masterson into the bullpen, but that no longer seems likely.
Third baseman Jack Hannahan and the Cleveland Indians avoided salary arbitration, agreeing to terms on a one-year contract.
Terms of the deal were not immediately known. Players had until noon Tuesday to exchange figures with their club. Hannahan was one of seven Cleveland players eligible for arbitration.
Hannahan was a pleasant surprise last season for the Indians, who signed him to a minor league deal before training camp. After Jason Donald broke his hand, Hannahan won the starting job at third and finished batting .250 (80-for-320) with eight homers and 40 RBIs in 110 games. He made his biggest contribution defensively, leading all AL third baseman with a .983 fielding percentage.
Hannahan will compete for the starting job this spring with Lonnie Chisenhall.
Chris Perez Coverage
The wife of Indians relief pitcher Chris Perez, Melanie Perez changed her plea from not guilty to no contest Tuesday in Rocky River Municipal Court to one count of possession of a controlled substance.
Cleveland Indians pitcher Chris Perez has been found guilty of a misdemeanor count of possession of a controlled substance in Rocky River Municipal Court Tuesday morning.
Indians pitcher Chris Perez will next appear in court in September.
Indians closer Chris Perez and first baseman Nick Swisher have moved closer to returning from shoulder injuries.
Indians closer Chris Perez will throw at least one more bullpen session and may make another rehab appearance in the minor leagues before coming off the disabled list.
Indians closer Chris Perez had his court appearance on drug charges moved to next month.
Chris Perez gives up 5 runs, 3 homers in rehab stint in Akron.
Chris Perez and Blake Wood are scheduled to pitch for the Akron Aeros Tuesday night.
Cleveland Indians two-time All-Star closer Chris Perez and his wife have pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor possession after marijuana was mailed to their home in their dog's name.