Braves sign Ender Inciarte to a five-year, $30.525 million extension

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The Atlanta Braves have signed outfielder Ender Inciarte to five-year, $30.525 million contract extension. There is a club option or a sixth year. The deal gives Inciarte a $3.5 million signing bonus, and then salaries of $2 million in 2017, $4 million in 2018, $5 million in 2019, $7 million in 2020, $8 million in 2021, and then a $9 million club option for 2022 with a $1.025 million buyout of it’s not exercised.

Inciarte made $523,000 in 2016, his third in the majors. This deal buys out all of his arbitration years and two of his potential free agency years. He just turned 26.

That’s a pretty fantastic deal for the Braves, who enjoyed Inciarte’s fantastic center field defense while seeing him post a .291/.351/.381 line at the plate in 2016. He is one of the top baserunners in the game as well.

Inciarte came over to the Braves along with top prospect Dansby Swanson in the trade which sent Shelby Miller to the Diamondbacks before last season. It was already a heist for the Braves given Swanson’s promise, but Inciarte, whose 2016 season was worth 3.6 WAR, would’ve made it a great deal for Atlanta if only he came over.

And not he’s locked up to a team-friendly deal for a long, long time.

Video: Albert Almora, Jr. lays out to make a great catch in deep right-center field

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Cubs center fielder Albert Almora, Jr. robbed Giants first baseman Brandon Belt of at least a double in the top of the first inning of Monday’s game at Wrigley Field. Almora completely left his feet to catch the ball before landing just shy of the warning track.

The Giants took the early lead two batters prior to Belt’s at-bat as Joe Panik hit a solo home run to center field.

Anibal Sanchez accepts optional assignment to Triple-A

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The Tigers announced on Monday that pitcher Anibal Sanchez has accepted an optional assignment to Triple-A Toledo. Pitcher Warwick Saupold was recalled from Toledo to take Sanchez’s roster spot.

Sanchez, 33, continued to struggle this season pitching out of the bullpen. He gave up 26 runs (21 earned) on 34 hits and nine walks with 22 strikeouts in 21 innings. Nine of those 34 hits were home runs. Sanchez finished the 2015 season with a 4.99 ERA and last season with a 5.87 ERA, so he’s had a rough go of it in recent years.

The decision to go to Triple-A was Sanchez’s, Anthony Fenech of the Free Press reports. Sanchez wants to be stretched out as a starting pitcher again.