According to an AP report from Greg Bell, The Seattle Mariners and Chone Figgins have reached a preliminary agreement on a $36 million, four-year contract pending a physical.
The contract for the former Los Angeles Angels sparkplug includes a vesting option for 2014 that could make the deal worth $45 million over five years.
The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the Mariners had yet to announce the deal, which was first reported to be close by Foxsports.com.
As I mentioned on Twitter last night, the sought after third baseman now joins All-Star Ichiro Suzuki to form what I believe is the game’s best 1-2 punch at the top of the order.
The 31-year-old Figgins had a tremendous season for the Angels and led the American League with 101 walks and stole 42 bases while posting a career-high .395 on-base percentage. Figgins batted .298 with five homers and 54 RBIs and helped the Halos win its third consecutive division title.
It’s a significant upgrade for the Mariners who upgrade their third base position formerly held by Adrian Beltre, who is a free agent.
The AP report added that Seattle general manager Jack Zduriencik wasn’t worried about possibly losing a first-round pick in order to get someone who he considers a star performer and very special player.
“If the right Type-A free agent came up and you knew it would help your club for the next several years … we all know lot of draft picks fall flat on their face,” Zduriencik said.
Ahh, a GM after my own heart.
For the Mets, there were several rumors tying Figgins to the orange and blue, but it now appears that the Mets never made any offer. With Chone Figgins, Placido Polanco, Marco Scutaro and Mark DeRosa all off the table, the Mets will still try to focus on Orlando Hudson who has at least three teams interested in him. However, nothing will happen on that front until they first unload incumbent Luis Castillo.
I believe that despite Castillo’s solid season, the Mets will still ultimately eat some of his salary to get something done.
With the Winter Meetings only two days away, last night Omar Minaya cautioned everyone not to expect any free agent signings until later in the month. We also learned that neither Fred or Jeff Wilpon will make the flight to Indianapolis.
We’ll keep you caught up on all the happenings.