Author: Aaron Gleeman

Giancarlo Stanton

Biggest deal in baseball history: Giancarlo Stanton close to 13-year, $325 million contract with Marlins

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Last night it was believed to be 10 years and $300 million. This morning it was said to be 12 years and $320 million. And now both Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com and Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com report that Giancarlo Stanton and the Marlins are close to signing a 13-year, $325 million contract.

Stanton’s new deal would break the previous record for the largest contract in MLB history, which is Miguel Cabrera and the Tigers at $292 million for 10 years.

Stanton still has two seasons of team control remaining via arbitration, so assuming this 13-year contract covers those two seasons and 11 seasons of free agency he’d be locked up through age 37 in 2027.

Stanton, who turned 25 years old earlier this month, finished runner-up in the NL MVP voting after hitting .288 with 37 homers and a .950 OPS in 142 games for the Marlins this season. He’s a career .271 hitter with a .903 OPS in 634 games, but the Marlins failed to finish with a winning record in any of his first five seasons and have not made the playoffs since 2003.

Tigers tell Torii Hunter they don’t want him back

Torii Hunter
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Torii Hunter made it clear that he wanted to stay in Detroit, at one point saying he’d retire if the Tigers didn’t want him back. He’s mellowed on that stance, opening himself up to other teams, which is good because today Tigers general manager Dave Dombrowski all but ruled out a reunion.

Dombrowski told Jason Beck of MLB.com:

We probably won’t re-sign Torii. I called Torii and his representative today and told them that.

Hunter’s defense has slipped to the point that he’s well below average in right field, but he still hit well this season at age 38 and reportedly has plenty of other teams interested.

Pirates sign A.J. Burnett to one-year, $8.5 million deal

A.J. Burnett
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Last offseason A.J. Burnett left the Pirates for the Phillies, but after a rough season in Philadelphia he’s going back to Pittsburgh.

Burnett has signed a one-year deal with the Pirates worth $8.5 million, which is significantly less than the $12.75 million player option he declined to leave the Phillies.

Burnett had a fantastic two-season run for the Pirates in 2012/2013, starting 61 games with a 3.41 ERA and 389 strikeouts in 393 innings, but he went 8-18 with a 4.59 ERA in 34 starts for the Phillies.

At age 38 he’s certainly no sure thing to bounce back, but for $8.5 million and a one-year commitment a reunion with Burnett makes a lot of sense for a Pirates rotation that may lose free agents Francisco Liriano and Edinson Volquez.

Rangers announce contract extensions for GM Jon Daniels, assistant GM Thad Levine

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Making official what was reported earlier this week the Rangers announced new three-year contract extensions for general manager Jon Daniels and assistant general manager Thad Levine.

The timing may seem odd following a terrible, injury wrecked season in which Texas went 67-95, but the Rangers have been one of the most successful teams in baseball since Daniels took over as GM in 2005 and Levine has been his right-hand man that whole time.

Daniels and Levine were both under contract through 2015. Ron Washington stepped down as manager late in the season and interim manager Tim Bogar was not asked back, as the Rangers chose Pirates coach Jeff Banister as their new skipper.

Tigers re-sign rehabbing Joel Hanrahan

Joel Hanrahan Getty
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Setbacks in his recovery from Tommy John elbow surgery meant Joel Hanrahan never pitched for the Tigers after signing a $1 million deal in May, but now they’ve re-signed him for 2015.

Bob Nightingale of USA Today reports that Hanrahan gets $1 million upfront again, plus another $2.5 million in potential incentives.

Detroit’s bullpen can certainly use plenty of help and Hanrahan was one of the best, hardest-throwing relievers in baseball before injuries derailed him, posting a 2.73 ERA with 228 strikeouts in 198 innings from 2010-2012. However, he threw just seven ineffective innings in 2013 and didn’t pitch in the majors at all this year.

Joe Nathan’s grip on the closer job is anything but secure and now the Tigers have former All-Star closers Hanrahan and Joakim Soria as other ninth-inning options.