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Wilson returns to Dodgers with new contract

Wilson returns to Dodgers with new contract

Wilson returns to Dodgers with new contract play video for Wilson returns to Dodgers with new contract

LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers accomplished their top offseason priority Thursday, re-signing setup reliever Brian Wilson to a one-year contract worth $10 million, according to a baseball source.

Wilson also gets a player option for at least $8.5 million in 2015 that could climb to $10 million, plus $700,000 in incentives. The agreement came shortly after another top free-agent reliever, Edward Mujica, signed for two years with Boston.

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Excited to get @BrianWilson38 back! Much needed ping pong competition in spring training.

- Clayton Kershaw (@ClaytonKersh22) December 5, 2013

Coming off a second Tommy John surgery and non-tendered by the Giants a year ago, Wilson signed a $1 million contract with the Dodgers on July 30 and was promoted Aug. 19. He went 2-1 with a 0.66 ERA in 18 games, allowed only one hit in 11 at-bats against lefties and only one of 11 inherited runners to score.

Wilson also was able to pitch multiple innings and on back-to-back days. As he was last season, Wilson has agreed to set up for established closer Kenley Jansen, as well as serve as an occasional closer when Jansen needs a rest.

The Dodgers are paying Wilson like a closer because they need his veteran presence, even more so after non-tendering reliever Ronald Belisario on Monday night. Other right-handers in the bullpen include former closer Brandon League and Chris Withrow

Belisario was in line for a salary around $2.5 million, which the Dodgers apparently believe would be better spent as part of Wilson's salary. The club still needs a veteran left-handed reliever to pair with Paco Rodriguez.

J.P. Howell filled that role in 2013, but he's looking for a three-year deal and the Dodgers aren't eager to hand out another one of those after giving League a three-year deal last winter.

Among the other candidates that were already free agents are Joaquin Benoit, Grant Balfour, Kevin Gregg, Fernando Rodney and Jesse Crain. Non-tenders added to that list include John Axford and Mitchell Boggs.

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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