MLB: AP source: Tigers, Ordonez agree to $10M deal
AP Sports Writer
DETROIT (AP) – The busy Detroit Tigers have addressed another need.
Magglio Ordonez and the Tigers have agreed to a $10 million, one-year contract, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press on Thursday. The person, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal hadn’t been announced, said the deal first reported by SI.com includes potential award bonuses.
Detroit declined Ordonez’s $15 million option in October, but wanted the six-time All-Star back for a seventh season if he appeared to be healthy after breaking his right ankle in July and needing season-ending surgery. The outfielder turns 37 next month.
Ordonez has hit .312 with 289 homers and 1,204 RBIs over 14 seasons with the Tigers and Chicago White Sox.
His American League-pennant winning homer four years ago lifted Detroit to its first World Series appearance since 1984. He hit a league-best .363 in 2007 and finished second in AL MVP voting.
Ordonez hit .303 with 12 homers and 59 RBIs in 84 games last season. He became the sixth Venezuelan to reach the 2,000-hit milestone and joined Omar Vizquel, Luis Aparicio, Andres Galarraga, Dave Concepcion and Bobby Abreu.
The Tigers signed Ordonez to a $75 million, five-year deal in 2005 as part of a complicated contract that could’ve paid him as much as $105 million over seven seasons.
Ordonez would’ve likely made $5 million more guaranteed in 2011 if he stayed healthy last season. He was on pace to start at least 135 games or make 540 plate appearances for his contract to be renewed for $15 million in 2011, but had a season-ending injury midway through the year.
The Tigers were at their best in the middle of the summer, surging to first place in the AL Central on July 10 with a 48-37 record, thanks in part to Ordonez’s bat.
Then, injuries to him and some other key players set the team up for a slide that it couldn’t recover from the rest of the season.
The Tigers started their active offseason by re-signing Brandon Inge and Jhonny Peralta to stabilize the left side of the lineup. They also signed Victor Martinez to play in the outfield and be a designated hitter and setup man Joaquin Benoit to fill their much needed void in the bullpen.
AP Sports Writer Ronald Blum in New York contributed to this report.