Blue Jays' Josh Donaldson receives record $23 million to avoid arbitration

Josh Donaldson, Blue Jays Agree to Record-Setting Contract to Avoid Arbitration

The Jays, however, have said repeatedly that they are not in a complete rebuild mode and want to compete for a playoff spot in 2018 and wouldn't be able to do that without Donaldson, the 2015 American League MVP, in the lineup. Expect more of the same from the third baseman in 2018. Donaldson put the injury behind him in the last two months of the season, when he hit.302 with 22 home runs, an on-base average of.410 and a slugging percentage of.688.

- Kris Bryant has agreed to a $10.85-million, one-year deal with the Chicago Cubs, a record for a player eligible for arbitration for the first time.

With the pressure off, Donaldson's $23 million salary could serve as a potential jumping off point for talks on a longer-term deal in the spring, or simply set him up to test the market in the fall.

Toronto's other arbitration eligible players are right-handers Dominic Leone, Roberto Osuna, Aaron Sanchez and Marcus Stroman, outfielder Kevin Pillar and second baseman Devon Travis.

Josh Donaldson, Blue Jays Agree to Record-Setting Contract to Avoid Arbitration
Josh Donaldson, Toronto Blue Jays agree to $23 million contract for 2018 MLB season

Josh Donaldson #20 of the Toronto Blue Jays celebrates after hitting a home run against the Boston Red Sox during the third inning at Fenway Park on September 26, 2017 in Boston, Massachusetts. By striking the agreement, the two sides will avoid any salary arbitration proceedings. The 2016 AL ERA leader was projected to earn $1.9 million in 2018 after a disappointing 2017 season and the lingering blister issues.

Angels RHP Garrett Richards: 1 year, $7.3 million.

- Left-hander Patrick Corbin and the Arizona Diamondbacks avoided salary arbitration by agreeing to a $7.5 million, one-year contract.

Orioles LHP Zach Britton: 1 year, $12 million. The 28-year-old was 14-13 with a 4.03 ERA last season and made $3.95 million.

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