Mariners and Brendan Ryan avoid arbitration with two-year deal

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This deal was announced earlier in the week, then denied, but now it’s officially official.

According to Kirby Arnold of the Everett Herald, the Mariners avoided arbitration with infielder Brendan Ryan by agreeing to a two-year contract.

Terms weren’t disclosed, but Stephen Hawkins of the Associated Press previously reported that Ryan agreed to a two-year, $2.75 million contract that would pay him $1 million this season and $1.75 million in 2012.

Ryan, who turns 29 in March, was acquired from the Cardinals last month after falling out of favor with Tony La Russa and some of his teammates. While he’s still one of the best defensive middle infielders in the game, he collapsed to a meager .223/.279/.294 batting line with a 573 OPS last season. Fits right in with the Mariners, right?

Now that we know Chone Figgins is officially moving back to third base, Ryan projects to be the starting second baseman for the Mariners this season, at least until Dustin Ackley is ready for the big leagues.

Report: Momentum in talks between Mariners, Jon Jay

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MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reports that there is some momentum in talks between the Mariners and free agent outfielder Jon Jay.

Jay, 32, hit .296/.374/.375 in 433 plate appearances with the Cubs last season, which is adequate. He’s heralded more for his defense and his ability to play all three outfield spots.

The Mariners are losing center fielder Jarrod Dyson to free agency and likely don’t want to rely on Guillermo Heredia next season, hence the interest in Jay. The free agent class for center fielders is otherwise relatively weak.