Johnson, Braves agree to 2-year deal through 2018

ATLANTA (AP) Closer Jim Johnson and the Atlanta Braves have agreed to a two-year contract through the 2018 season.

The 33-year-old right-hander had been eligible for free agency. The deal was announced Sunday, the final day of the Braves' season.

Johnson provides a stabilizing influence on the young bullpen, and the team was eager to keep him around as it prepares to move to a new stadium in 2017. Johnson is 2-6 with a 3.11 ERA with 19 saves in 22 chances.

General manager John Coppolella said negotiations with Johnson were pushed along by the Braves' strong finish. The GM says it was important to have a veteran reliever on a team that expects to be a playoff contender the next couple of years.

Johnson says he's excited about the next chapter for the organization after what he describes as ''a development year.''

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