The Texas Rangers and outfielder Nelson Cruz are negotiating a one-year deal to avoid salary arbitration before their hearing on February 17th, according to Enrique Rojas of ESPN. While a one-year deal may be the top priority right now, Cruz tells Rojas they are leaving the door open for a long-term deal.
"We're exchanging figures, negotiating for a year but leaving the door open for a multiyear deal," Cruz told ESPNDeportesLosAngeles on Tuesday.
If the two sides cannot reach an agreement, they will need to fight for their case in front of a third-party arbitration panel. After earning $3.65 million last season, the 31-year-old Cruz field for a substantial raise and is looking for $7.5 million this time around while the the Rangers countered at $5.5 million, reports Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.
Since playing regularly, Cruz had his worst season thus far last season. With injuries that limited him when playing and kept him out some time, he put up a 1.6 fWAR on the season.