Chris Davis is upset Orioles haven’t offered him an extension

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Orioles slugger Chris Davis was named the team MVP today for the second time in three years and a couple hours later the impending free agent expressed frustration that the front office has not approached him about a contract extension to remain in Baltimore.

Davis is having a monster year, hitting .258 with a league-leading 45 homers and a .904 OPS, bouncing back from a brutal 2014 that saw him hit just .196 before a 25-game suspension.

Davis is a tough free agent to get a handle on because his production has varied wildly from year-to-year and his extreme strikeout rate may scare off some teams, but he’s 29 years old and has averaged 40 homers per 150 games during the past four seasons.

He’s going to get a big contract from someone and it’s understandable if the Orioles are hesitant to be that team, but Davis made it clear to the local media that he wants to remain in Baltimore and also pointed out that shortstop J.J. Hardy and center fielder Adam Jones have signed in-season extensions with the Orioles recently.

Yuli Gurriel takes pay cut to $7M to stay with Astros

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HOUSTON (AP) First baseman Yuli Gurriel and the Houston Astros have agreed to a one-year contract with an option for 2022 that guarantees $7 million, a cut of nearly 20% from his 2020 deal.

The agreement was announced hours before the defending AL champions started their first-round playoff matchup against at Minnesota on Tuesday, an odd time to reach a contract for a future season.

Gurriel’s 2020 contract called for an $8.3 million salary and wound up being worth $3,074,074 prorated.

His new deal includes a $6.5 million salary for 2021 and an $8 million club option for 2021 with a $500,000 buyout. Gurriel can earn $2 million in performance bonuses each year based on plate appearances: $250,000 each for 300 and 350 $350,000 apiece for 400 and 450 and $400,000 each for 500 and 550.

He also would get $50,000 for becoming an All-Star, $50,000 for League Championship Series MVP, $100,000 for Word Series MVP, $200,000 for league MVP, $100,000 for second and $50,000 for third. There is a $50,000 bonus for Gold Glove and another $50,000 for Silver slugger.

Gurriel would have been eligible for free agency under a provision in his 2020 contract, even though he does not have the six years of major league service usually required. His new deal includes the same provision.

He hit .232 with six homers, 12 and 22 RBIs in 57 games during the pandemic-shortened season, down from a career-best .298 with 31 homers and 104 RBIs in 2019. He helped Houston reach the playoffs for the fourth straight year.

In five seasons in Houston that followed a stellar career in Cuba, the 36-year-old has hit .287 with 71 homers and 301 RBIs.