AP source: Guardians nearing deal with All-Star 2B Giménez
By TOM WITHERS
CLEVELAND (AP) Andrés Giménez became an All-Star last season. He is about to get paid like one.
The smooth-fielding second baseman has agreed to terms on a long-term contract with the Cleveland Guardians, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press on Tuesday.
Giménez, who batted .297 and won a Gold Glove for the AL Central champions last season, could sign the deal within days, according to the person who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the contract won't be finalized until he passes a physical.
The Guardians also are nearing a deal with reliever Trevor Stephan, the person said.
ESPN reported that Giménez has agreed to a seven-year, $106.5 million package that includes a club option for an eighth year. It’s the largest pre-arbitration deal ever given to a second baseman.
Gimenez signed a one-year deal worth $739,400 earlier this month.
A year ago, Cleveland announced All-Star third baseman José Ramírez's seven-year, $141 million new contract on the eve of opening day. Now, they're on the verge of locking up Giménez as they embark on 2023.
The Guardians also gave multiyear deals to closer Emmanuel Clase and center fielder Myles Straw last spring before baseball's youngest team went 92-70 and won the division going away.
The 24-year-old Giménez has quickly developed into one of the league’s best all-around middle infielders. He hit 17 homers, drove in 69 runs and stole 20 bases last season and was one of four Gold Glove winners for Cleveland.
Giménez came to the Guardians in 2021 as part of the trade that sent shortstop Francisco Lindor to the New York Mets. He arrived along with shortstop Amed Rosario, and the two have allowed the Guardians to remain among the league's top teams despite parting with another All-Star player.
Cleveland also has discussed extensions with Rosario and outfielder Steven Kwan, who was one of baseball's top rookies in 2022. Rosario told reporters in Arizona on Sunday that his agent had been in talks with the club.
Stephan was an invaluable piece of Cleveland’s strong bullpen last season. The right-hander went 6-5 with a 2.69 ERA and three saves in 66 games.
The Guardians are leaving their spring training complex Tuesday for Seattle, where they'll open the season on Thursday night against the Mariners.
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Updated March 29, 2023