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Justin Smoak agrees to contract, avoids arbitration

By Brent Stecker

Mariners first baseman Justin Smoak avoided an arbitration hearing by agreeing to a one-year contract for 2014 with the team, with a club vesting option for 2015.

The financial terms of the contract, which the Mariners announced in a press release Saturday, were not disclosed.

According to a tweet from Ben Nicholson-Smith, baseball editor of Sportsnet.ca, Smoak is guaranteed $2.7875 million – his 2014 salary will be $2.6375 million, and the option vests with 525 plate appearances in 2014, valued at $3.65 million with a $150,000 buyout.

Smoak, 27, hit .238 in 2013, with 50 RBIs and a career-high 20 home runs despite a 15-day DL stint in June. He has played in 199 games with the Mariners since being acquired in a trade from the Texas Rangers for pitcher Cliff Lee during the 2010 season.

He was the last arbitration-eligible player on the Mariners’ roster. The franchise, which earlier agreed to terms with arbitration-eligible players Michael Saunders and Logan Morrison this offseason, has not had an arbitration hearing with a player since 2003.

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