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Tigers and J.D. Martinez discussing one- and two-year deals

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Chris Iott of MLive.com reported last month that the Tigers and J.D. Martinez were working toward a long-term contract extension and Martinez acknowledged at that time that he would “love to be a Tiger for life.”

But it appears those negotiations have been scaled back with a potential arbitration hearing looming. It would be the Tigers’ first arbitration hearing since 2001.

Martinez filed for $8 million and was offered $6 million when figures were formally exchanged on January 15.

FOX Sports’ Jon Morosi says the two parties are currently discussing one- and two-year deals. Martinez is arbitration-eligible for both 2016 and 2017, so neither of the proposals currently on the table would roll into his potential free agency. A two-year deal would simply cover those final two arbitration-eligible seasons.

Martinez appears to be betting on himself here — banking that his 2014 and 2015 were no fluke. Or maybe the Tigers really low-balled him in those initial long-term talks.

The 28-year-old outfielder led Detroit with 38 home runs and 102 RBI last season.

Shohei Ohtani medically cleared to begin throwing progression

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The Angels released a medical update on P/DH Shohei Ohtani Thursday evening. Ohtani was reevaluated by Dr. Steve Yoon at the Kerlan Jobe Institute. The right-hander’s sprained UCL showed improved healing and, as a result, he has been cleared to begin a throwing progression.

Ohtani, 24, was diagnosed with a Grade 2 sprain of the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow after his June 6 start against the Royals and hasn’t pitched since, though he has been in the lineup as a hitter since July 3. It was initially believed he would undergo season-ending Tommy John surgery. Then the thought was that Ohtani wouldn’t pitch again for the rest of the season, but this update suggests a possibility he could return to the mound before the season is over.

In nine starts, Ohtani put together a 3.10 ERA with a 61/20 K/BB ratio in 49 1/3 innings. As a hitter, he batted .283/.365/.522 with seven home runs and 22 RBI in 157 plate appearances.