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Ian Snell Signs Long-Term Deal

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Excellent:

Snell's deal, which takes effect this year, is guaranteed at a total of $8 million for three years. He also receives a $600,000 signing bonus.

The 2011 and 2012 seasons are at the Pirates' option. Those years are worth at least a total of $16 million to Snell. There also are standard incentive clauses in those final two years.

If Snell is half the pitcher he can be, this is going to save the Bucs a ton of money in arbitration. It also potentially buys out a year of free agency eligibility at what appears to be a very reasonable price. Long term deals are risky, but like many of them, this one eliminates much of the risk with the inclusion of option years.