Blue Jays acquire outfielder Michael Saunders from the Mariners for starter J.A. Happ

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Jayson Stark of ESPN.com has the breaking news

This feels like a steal for Toronto. Happ posted a decent 4.22 ERA in 158 innings this past season for the Jays, but he’s nothing more than a fourth or fifth starter and he’ll be a free agent next winter. Saunders, meanwhile, boasts a 111 OPS+ since the beginning of the 2012 season and won’t be a free agent for another two years. He shores up left field for the Jays on the cheap. He also gives the club yet another Canadian-born player.

Royals, Alex Gordon close to contract agreement

Alex Gordon
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MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan reports that the Royals and outfielder Alex Gordon are “getting close” to an agreement on a one-year contract. Terms of the deal aren’t yet known, but the Royals could make it official within the next few days.

Gordon, who turns 36 years old next month, hit .266/.345/.396 with 13 home runs and 76 RBI over 633 plate appearances with the Royals this past season. His offense has waned, owning an adjusted OPS of 84 since 2016 (100 is average), but he still plays decent defense.

Gordon has spent all 13 years of his major league career with the Royals. With the club in a rebuilding phase, he will serve as the clubhouse leader and be a mentor to younger players on the roster.