Thanks for 2014, Nelson Cruz.
— Enrique Rojas/ESPN (@Enrique_Rojas1) December 1, 2014
According to a report from ESPN’s Enrique Rojas, Nelson Cruz has agreed to a four-year deal with the Seattle Mariners.
After turning down the Texas Rangers’ qualifying offer, the O’s inked Cruz to a one-year, $8 million contract last offseason and he proved to be arguably the biggest bargain on the free agent market. He led the Majors in dingers (40) and slashed .271/.333/.525 with a 140 OPS+.
Perhaps I’m in the minority of Orioles fans, but I never expected Cruz’s one-year deal to blossom into something more long-term. The O’s were reportedly willing to go up to three-years, Cruz’s age 37 season, but Seattle topped that with four at $57 million ($14.25 million AAV).
I love all the O's fans calling the org. cheap for not re-signing Cruz. As if they can afford to waste $14M/yr on an aging slugger in 3 yrs.
— Jeff Long (@BSLJeffLong) December 1, 2014
Many are wondering how losing out on Cruz will affect the Orioles interest in Matt Kemp and their negotiations with Nick Markakis and Andrew Miller. The simple answer: it won’t.
Kemp will make over $21 million annually between now and 2019. The O’s have their price on Markakis and don’t seem to be budging as a market for him appears small and it seems that they’ve accepted being outbid for Miller.