O’s avoid arbitration with Adam Jones at $6.15 million

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From beat writer Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun comes word that the Orioles have avoided arbitration with center fielder Adam Jones by agreeing to a one-year, $6.15 million contract.

Jones filed for a $7.4 million salary and was offered $5 million from the O’s when arbitration figures were exchanged last month. It took a little over three weeks for the two sides to find a middle ground.

An arbitration hearing was scheduled for Friday.

Jones, 26, batted .280 with a .785 OPS, 25 home runs, 83 RBI and 12 stolen bases in 151 games last year for last-place Baltimore. He’s currently slated to hit the free agent market after the 2013 season.

Rakuten Golden Eagles sign Jabari Blash

Jabari Blash
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Former Angels outfielder Jabari Blash has signed a one-year deal with the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles of Nippon Professional Baseball, the team announced Friday. Per the Japan Times, the deal is said to be worth around $1.06 million. Blash was released from his contract with the Angels at the end of November.

The 29-year-old outfielder has had a rough go of it in the majors, where he failed to duplicate the promising results he delivered in the minors. While he consistently batted above .250 with 20-30 home runs per season at the Double- and Triple-A level, he petered out in back-to-back gigs with the Padres and Angels and slumped toward a .103/.200/.128 finish across 45 PA for Anaheim in 2018.

The hope, of course, is that the environment in NPB will help him get a better handle on his issues at the plate — in a best case scenario, resulting in a full-scale transformation that could make him more marketable to MLB teams in the future. To that end, Blash expects to be utilized as a cleanup batter in the Eagles’ lineup and will focus on assisting the club as they make a run toward the Japan Series.