Rangers, Nelson Cruz Nearing Two-Year Deal

THURSDAY: The deal would likely be worth $15MM-plus, Grant tweets. Cruz appears to have avoided arbitration, though nothing's official at this point.

WEDNESDAY: The Rangers are nearing a two-year deal with Nelson Cruz, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News reports. Cruz filed for $7.5MM in arbitration, while the Rangers countered with a $5.5MM offer. The sides have an arbitration hearing scheduled February 17th.

Cruz hit .263/.312/.509 with 29 home runs in the regular season before clubbing eight postseason homers and being named the 2011 ALCS MVP. The 31-year-old ACES client is arbitration eligible for the second time after earning $3.65MM in 2011. A two-year deal would buy out both of his remaining arbitration seasons, but no free agent years. MLBTR's Tim Dierkes examined the cases for Cruz, Adam Jones and Alex Gordon earlier today.

This post was first published on February 8th, 2012.

25 Responses to Rangers, Nelson Cruz Nearing Two-Year Deal Leave a Reply

  1. j6takish 3 years ago

    Very odd year for Nelly. Walk rate is down, his traditionally strong fielding ratings are way down, and he managed to stay reasonably healthy…odd indeed. 

    • NickinIthaca 3 years ago

      Nelson Cruz is a strong fielder? 

      I was rooting for the Rangers, and his defense in the series (and season) was pretty repulsive.  

      • Kurisu Rg 3 years ago

        He has been known to take bad routes and overplaying some hit balls, but he does have a great arm.

      • He plays a really good RF. He’s agile for his size. One bad play in the Series doesn’t make him a bad fielder.
        Go back and watch the ALCS where he gunned down Cabrera at home. He does that about 3-4x a season and it’s beautiful lol.

        • I don’t know how great of a fielder he is, but his arm is a thing of beauty.

        • Kurisu Rg 3 years ago

          Heck, even Juan Pierre might have gotten Cabrera on that flyball.

          Okay… Maybe not Pierre (in fact, there’s no way Juan Pierre throws out anybody), but most decent right fielders could’ve had a shot there with Cabrera running. But Cruz’s was special because he had him by 10 feet.

        • NickinIthaca 3 years ago

          As people have said it’s more his great arm that gives him value in the field. It’s not that terribly rough play in the series that stands out but the memories of him limping his way to balls on his tender hammys throughout the season.

          • NickinIthaca 3 years ago

            Obviously I could be wrong but nothing outside of Nelly’s arm stands out to me defensively

          • jwsox 3 years ago

            UZR has him at a career like 5 in right  nothing great not bad..pretty average

          • notsureifsrs 3 years ago

            …0 would be average. 5 runs above average is decidedly good. and prior to this year, his UZR/150 was over 10

            DRS had him positive in 2011 as well fwiw (though not as highly rated as usual)

  2. Kurisu Rg 3 years ago

    How much would a 33 year-old slugger, who’s never played more than 128 games in his career due to injuries, fetch in the open market? I guess he would get a 4 year/$65 million contract at the most, if he keeps putting up those numbers.

    Also, if Grant is correct, then the Rangers would only have Mike Napoli to worry about, who was also the likeliest to go to an arbitration hearing before Andrus got that three-year contract.

    • j6takish 3 years ago

       We will probably find out in two seasons. My gut tells me the Rangers let Nelly and Hamilton walk

      • Kurisu Rg 3 years ago

        Hamilton’s recent relapse might save the Rangers from some PR criticism, if they decide to let him test free agency. I’m sure they’d love to have Hambone back. But at the right price, which is way below what Hamilton thinks it should be (who’s more worried about sticking up for the “union” and “future players”).

        If I’m the Rangers, I’d be more focused on extending Kinsler and possibly Napoli (as far as position players go).

        • I think that’s the route they’ll take. The Rangers should re-sign Kinsler, Napoli, and Cruz (to no more than a 4-5 year deal). Then just let Hamilton go. I love Hamilton, but his injuries scare me. The last groin injury is not a good sign. I’d rather go after Votto through trade, or just in 2 years.

          • I hadn’t really thought about it, but Texas seems like the most logical fit for Votto. Once he gets in that jet stream his home runs will soar. The only other true suitor I can think of is the Blue Jays (but only if they change their 5 year only policy).

          • Yea, well if he demands a Prince type deal the Rangers will be out. They just won’t hand out that kind of contract.

          • Kurisu Rg 3 years ago

            I don’t think they’d even do a Jayson Werth-sized contract with Hamilton. I think JD’s max offer would be for 4 years at $18 mill/year.

          • I agree, but I was talking about Votto. Supposedly, people are saying he will warrant a Prince type deal.

          • Kurisu Rg 3 years ago

            Right. Reading fail on my part.
            As for Votto. He will be 30 when he hits free agency. Three years older than Fielder. I’m not sure if the Rangers would give him a similar deal. But there’s always one team crazy enough to do it. It only takes one nutty owner. Depending on how the Hamilton situation shapes out, I think Rangers ownership might consider it.

          • If he puts up the same numbers the next couple seasons, he’s likely looking at $220-230 over 9-10. Prince and Albert have set the standard for star first baseman. Honestly, I think Votto is better than Fielder. Higher average, better body, and more speed. Only slightly less power as well.

  3. AmericanMovieFan 3 years ago

    I’m guessing 2 years/$20MM with a $13MM club option and a $1MM buy out.

  4. lets just hope the Rangers don’t drop the ball. haha

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