Carlos Ruiz will remain with the Phillies for at least three years, CSNPhilly's Jim Salisbury confirmed via sources Monday.
Chooch is staying with the Phillies, and he's finally getting paid. The soon-to-be 35-year-old catcher will make $8.5 million per season for three years.
Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal reported the story first.
The deal comes with a $4.5 million club option for a fourth year with a $500K buyout. Since it's a club-only option, it's nothing to freak out about. By 2017, $4.5 million might even be the going rate for a backup catcher, assuming Ruiz would fill that role at that point.
Ruiz can also make an additional $500K in each season in which he starts at least 125 games at backstop.
General manager Ruben Amaro said the Phillies wouldn't wait around on Ruiz to make a decision but apparently got his wish by re-signing the catcher fairly quickly.
Chooch is coming off a down year in which he hit just .268/.320/.368 and missed significant time because of a 25-game suspension and injuries. But Ruiz proved he can still swing the bat by hitting .288 with four homers and 12 doubles in the final two months of the season.
The Rockies, Blue Jays and Red Sox were also believed to be interested in Ruiz.
Chooch made $5 million last year in the final season of a four-year, $13.35 million deal signed prior to the 2010 season. Ruiz vastly outplayed the terms of his contract over that span, in which he .295/.374/.436 and made the All-Star team in 2012. Prior to appearing in just 92 games last year, he played in 121, 132 and 114 games in 2010 through 2012, respectively.
The alternatives for Ruiz weren't fitting for the Phillies.
Brian McCann (age 30) will command more years and money than Chooch got, and he hits from the left side and doesn't field nearly as well as Ruiz does. A.J. Pierzynski (37) also bats left-handed and is an average defender at best. Jarrod Saltalamacchia (28) is a switch-hitter but struggles as a righty. Top catching prospect Tommy Joseph isn't anywhere near ready to assume a major-league level starting job.
So it had to be Ruiz.