Don­ald­son, Bryant agree to rich deals, avoid ar­bi­tra­tion

The Maui News - - SPORTS -

Third base­man Josh Don­ald­son and the Toronto Blue Jays agreed to a $23 mil­lion con­tract Fri­day, the largest oneyear deal for an ar­bi­tra­tion-el­i­gi­ble player.

The 32-year-old, a three­time All-Star, topped the $21,625,000, one-year deal cov­er­ing 2018 agreed to last May by out­fielder Bryce Harper and Wash­ing­ton.

Don­ald­son, the 2015 Amer­i­can League MVP, got a $6 mil­lion raise af­ter re­bound­ing from an in­jury-slowed 2016 to hit .270 last sea­son with 33 homers and 78 RBIs in 113 games. The sure-handed in­fielder missed time from April 14 through May 25 with a calf in­jury, which also ham­pered him dur­ing spring train­ing.

Don­ald­son was com­ing off a $28.65 mil­lion, two-year deal. He is el­i­gi­ble for free agency af­ter this sea­son.

In Chicago, Kris Bryant also has a record-set­ting con­tract, agree­ing on a one-year deal with the Cubs worth $10.85 mil­lion — the most for a player el­i­gi­ble for ar­bi­tra­tion for the first time.

The pre­vi­ous mark was held by Ryan Howard, who was awarded $10 mil­lion by a three-per­son panel in 2008. The Cubs and Bryant avoided ar­bi­tra­tion, and the 26-year-old third base­man re­ceives a hefty raise af­ter mak­ing $1.05 mil­lion last year.

Bryant hit .295 with 29 home runs and 73 RBIs in 2017. The pre­vi­ous sea­son, he earned Na­tional League MVP hon­ors when he hit .292 with 39 homers and 102 RBIs as the Cubs won the World Se­ries that year for the first time since 1908.

Also get­ting paid Fri­day was third base­man Manny Machado, who agreed to a $16 mil­lion con­tract with the Bal­ti­more Ori­oles, avoid­ing ar­bi­tra­tion.

Machado, who can be­come a free agent af­ter this sea­son, hit .259 with 33 homers and 95 RBIs last year, when he made $11.5 mil­lion. He has been men­tioned in per­sis­tent trade ru­mors.

The Ori­oles also reached agree­ment with in­jured closer Zach Brit­ton on a $12 mil­lion deal.

AP file photo

Josh Don­ald­son of the Blue Jays got a $6 mil­lion raise af­ter re­bound­ing from an in­jury-slowed 2016 to hit .270 last sea­son with 33 homers and 78 RBIs in 113 games.

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