BALTIMORE -- Orioles catcher Matt Wieters agreed to a $5.5 million deal for 2013 on Friday afternoon, avoiding a potentially contentious arbitration hearing and allowing him to enter Spring Training without his contract status hanging over his head.
"It's a good feeling," Wieters said Friday night at the Maryland Science Center, where he joined teammates and front-office staff for the premiere of the film "The BUCKle Up Birds: An Underdog Story" at the IMAX Theater.
"We were going to focus on the season, no matter what, and let the business people handle the business side, but it is nice to get it behind you and completely have everything in the rearview mirror and now continue to move forward."
The Orioles -- who locked up executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette and manager Buck Showalter through 2018 -- haven't approached Wieters about a long-term deal. But, as he reminded reporters, he is under team control for the next three seasons.
"That's something that we're both fine with right now," he said. "We're just going to go out there and play this year, and I'm not going to focus on the business side anymore because we were able to get this out of the way."
Instead, Wieters and his teammates were able to relax, catch up and relive 2012 one more time on the eve of Saturday's annual Fanfest. "The BUCKle Up Birds: An Underdog Story" chronicles the best moments of 2012, from the club's offseason moves through the organization's first postseason appearance in 15 years and is narrated by MASN broadcaster Jim Hunter.
The DVD, which will be available for purchase at Fanfest, was produced in-house by the award-winning Orioles Productions and features in-game footage and off-field interviews involving key moments throughout the year, from dramatic wins to each of the six Orioles Legends Celebration Series unveilings. Additional bonus content includes footage from the Orioles' postgame Wild Card celebration.
Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Twitter @britt_ghiroli. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.