Baltimore Orioles sign Nelson Cruz

By Alex Jordan,

Free-agent outfielder Nelson Cruz and the Baltimore Orioles agreed to a one-year, $8 million contract on Saturday. There is a physical pending and the deal has $750,000 in incentives.

Cruz becomes the second player to sign with the Orioles this week. Three days ago, they signed right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez to a four-year, $50 million deal.

The Seattle Mariners, New York Mets and Texas Rangers all had an interest in Cruz. The Rangers gave him a qualifying offer that was worth $14.1 million, but Cruz rejected that offer, Yahoo Sports reported.

Cruz has been with the Rangers for the last eight seasons. He hit .266 with 27 home runs and 76 RBIs before serving a 50-game suspension for his involvement in the Biogenesis scandal last year. He is one of seven players to have at least 20 home runs in each of the last five seasons, according to ESPN. He has 157 career home runs.

Cruz, who is a two-time All-Star, is a great addition for the Orioles. He will add power as their primary designated hitter and help make their lineup one of the best in the American League. It will be interesting to see how the Orioles' new recruits perform this year.

image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

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