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Blue Jays rumors: Darren Oliver eyeing raise for 2013

The veteran left-hander will opt for retirement if Toronto does not increase his salary for next season.


Veteran left-hander Darren Oliver is still mulling retirement, and has set a sort of terms that the Toronto Blue Jays must meet if they want him to return in 2013, report Ken Rosenthal and Jon Morosi of FOX Sports:

Left-hander Darren Oliver's decision on whether to continue his career is more complicated than it might appear.

Oliver, 42, wants to play, but is not willing to return to the Toronto Blue Jays unless the team increases his salary from $3 million, according to major-league sources.

The reliever signed a one-year, $4.0 million contract with the Blue Jays prior to the 2012 season. The deal included a $3 million club option for next year -- which Toronto exercised -- but the reliever apparently prefers to retire than take a salary at below market value, according to Rosenthal and Morosi's sources.

While most 42-year-olds would probably be ecstatic to get any sort of guaranteed money from an MLB club, Oliver's continued excellence in the bullpen coupled with the gobs of money handed out to southpaw relievers on the open market this winter make his demands seem very reasonable.

Oliver threw 56⅔ innings in 2012, posting a career-best 2.06 ERA while striking out over eight batters per nine, and owns a stellar 2.52 earned-run average over the past five seasons.