PEORIA, Ariz. (AP) — The Seattle Mariners and first baseman Justin Smoak have avoided arbitration by agreeing on a contract for the 2014 season with a club option for 2015.
The Mariners announced Smoak’s new deal on Saturday. Smoak will earn $2,637,500 this season and $3.65 million next season if the option is picked up. He was Seattle’s last arbitration eligible player.
With the moves to acquire Corey Hart and Logan Morrison in the offseason, Smoak’s time at first base could be significantly reduced if he isn’t a consistent performer at the plate.
Smoak, 27, hit a career-high 20 homers last season, but batted just .238. He improved after a stint on the disabled list in June, raising his average to .274 in early August before a swoon over the final six weeks of the season.
Angels’ Mulder tears Achilles
TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — Los Angeles Angels pitcher Mark Mulder tore his left Achilles tendon Saturday, cutting short his comeback and possibly bringing his career to an end.
Mulder last pitched in the majors in 2008 for St. Louis. The 36-year-old left-hander was hoping to make the Angels’ rotation after being invited in January to spring training, but team spokesman Eric Kay said Mulder felt a pop during agility drills.
Mulder will wait for the swelling to go down before surgery is scheduled. He then faces a six- to eight-month recovery, meaning his career could be over.
Mulder won 103 games over nine major league seasons with Oakland and St. Louis, including a 21-win season in 2001.
He struggled with arm injuries and had surgery over his final two campaigns with the Cardinals, throwing his most recent major league pitch on July 9, 2008.