MLB arbitration hearings loom for Indians, Aviles
As spring training gets closer, teams and players continue to round out their rosters and finalize contracts for internal players in advance of the 2013 season. Most of baseball's arbitration eligible players already agreed to one year deals almost two weeks ago, but Indians' infielder Mike Aviles still remains the lone arbitration eligible player that is unsigned.
The Indians and Aviles were unable to reach an agreement prior to the January 18th 1 p.m. signing deadline, so as part of the process they exchanged their figures that are on file with the MLB Labor Relations Department. Aviles is requesting $3.4 million while the Indians are offering $2.4 million. As part of the basic agreement both sides can continue to discuss the parameters of a deal, but can only work from within the two numbers presented for a one year deal or talk about a multi-year deal.
Aviles was projected by MLBTradeRumors.com to get $2.3 million, so he will obviously eclipse that. The Indians have not gone to arbitration with a player since 1991 when both Greg Swindell and Jerry Browne went to arbitration. Aviles is not expected to be a streak breaker as he and the Indians will probably come to a deal anytime in the next few days.
Aviles, 31, hit .250 with 13 homers, 60 RBI and .663 OPS in 136 games for the Red Sox last year as their starting shortstop. He was traded to the Blue Jays early this offseason as compensation for John Farrell, and then days after that was traded to the Indians in exchange for Esmil Rogers. He is expected to fill a super utility role for the Indians this season as the backup at shortstop, third base, second base, designated hitter and may even play some outfield and first base if needed.
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