Nelson Cruz, Rangers reach a two-year deal avoiding arbitration

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UPDATE II:  The deal is for $16 million.

UPDATE: Deal done. Terms aren’t yet available.

8:50 AM: The Dallas Morning News reports that Nelson Cruz is close to signing a two-year deal with the Rangers, which would avoid arbitration. They have a hearing set for Monday in which he is seeking $7.5 million. Texas has countered with $5.5 million.

Cruz hit .263/.312/.509 with 29 HR and 87 RBI in 475 at bats. He misses a lot of time — he has never played in more than 128 games — but locking him up on a short term deal now probably saves the Rangers a good bit of money over what they’d have to pay in arbitration.