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Report: Yankees to sign Troy Tulowitzki

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ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Yankees and shortstop Troy Tulowitzki have agreed to a contract, pending a physical. The Blue Jays, who released Tulowitzki on December 11, will pay his $20 million salary minus the major league minimum. The Blue Jays will also be on the hook for Tulowitzki’s $14 million salary in 2020 and $15 million in 2021 (with a $4 million buy out), both minus the major league minimum.

Tulowitzki, 34, missed the entire 2018 season recovering from surgery to remove bone spurs in both heels. He posted a weak .678 OPS in 66 games in 2017 and his best years are almost certainly behind him.

The Yankees, however, will be without Didi Gregorius, who underwent Tommy John surgery in October and isn’t expected to return until around the All-Star break. Tulowitzki will serve as a stopgap as the roster is presently constructed. The Yankees, of course, could still sign Manny Machado, as Passan notes that the Tulowitzki signing doesn’t preclude them from such a deal.

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.