Blue Jays, Josh Donaldson reach $23M deal for 2018 season

Third baseman Josh Donaldson and the Toronto Blue Jays on Friday broke the record for the highest salary among players eligible for arbitration, reaching agreement on a one-year deal for $23 million, a source told ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick, confirming multiple reports.

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The previous arbitration record of $21.625 million for a one-year deal was held by Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper.

Donaldson, 32, is a three-time All-Star and the 2015 AL MVP. He rebounded from an injury-slowed 2016 to hit .270 last season with 33 homers and 78 RBIs. He missed 49 games last season, largely due to a calf injury.

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.

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Since his debut in 2013, Donaldson ranks second in WAR among all position players, trailing only Mike Trout (43.8 to 36.2)

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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