Josh Donaldson is about to cash in on his American League Most Valuable Player season.
The third baseman and the Toronto Blue Jays agreed to a two-year, $29 million deal Monday to avoid arbitration, SportsNet Canada reported.
Donaldson was seeking an $11.8 million salary for 2016 in arbitration, while the Blue Jays had countered with an offer of $11.35 million.
His new $14.5 million average annual salary is more than three times the $4.3 million he made last year in his first season of arbitration. Donaldson will remain under Toronto's control through the 2018 season.
After making the All-Star team for the Oakland A's in 2014, Donaldson was traded to the Blue Jays in November 2014 for infielder Brett Lawrie, right-hander Kendall Graveman, left-hander Sean Nolin and minor league shortstop Franklin Barreto. At least through one year, the deal was a clear victory for Toronto.
Donaldson, 30, led the majors with 122 runs and topped the AL with 123 RBIs and with 84 extra-base hits. He batted .297 with a .371 on-base percentage and a .568 slugging percentage in 158 games. Donaldson placed third in the league in on-base-plus-slugging percentage (.939), third in home runs (41), fourth in doubles (41), and fifth in hits (184).
Lawrie put up his usual pedestrian offensive numbers for the A's last year, then was traded to the Chicago White Sox in December. Graveman and Nolin combined for seven wins in 27 starts for Oakland, while Barreto had a good season in Class A.