The Toronto Blue Jays and center fielder Kevin Pillar have agreed on a one-year deal worth $3.25 million for the upcoming 2018 season, avoiding arbitration, sources tell FanRag Sports. Expect more of the same from the third baseman in 2018.
For an arbitration-eligible player, Donaldson's $23 million sets a Major League Baseball record. He rebounded from an injury-slowed 2016 to hit.270 last season with 33 homers and 78 RBIs.
Donaldson, who will be eligible for free agency after the 2018 season, earned $17 million last year in the final season of a $28.65 million, two-year deal.
Since coming over from the Oakland A's, Donaldson has 111 home runs and an even 300 RBI in three season with the Blue Jays.
After three straight years as an All-Star and two with top-five finishes in All-Star voting Donaldson's production was slightly down in 2017, partially due to an early-season calf injury that kept him out for six weeks. The 27-year-old hit.253 with 13 home runs and 49 RBIs last season and made $552,100.
In addition, the Blue Jays also avoided arbitration with starting pitcher Aaron Sanchez, outfielder Ezequiel Carrera and left-hander Aaron Loup, signing the pair to one-year deals Friday. Also not known is whether Toronto would trade Donaldson at some point either before or during the season, especially with those St. Louis Cardinals rumors not going away any time soon. "It's a compliment that there are other teams that feel their team would be better with me on it".
President Mark Shapiro and GM Ross Atkins have come out and said that they are not looking to move Donaldson as they want to be competitive despite the New York Yankees loading up in the offseason.