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Monday, December 10, 2018  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Sports

Verlander, Posey cash in

Pitcher Justin Verlander, right, received a huge raise from the Tigers and general manager Dave Dombrowski. (Associated Press)
Pitcher Justin Verlander, right, received a huge raise from the Tigers and general manager Dave Dombrowski. (Associated Press)

After leading their teams to last year’s World Series, Justin Verlander and Buster Posey cashed in just hours apart Friday.

The All-Star pitcher and MVP catcher were guaranteed nearly $350 million in contracts by the Detroit Tigers and San Francisco Giants, a sure sign of the baseball times: Teams are awash with revenue from television and high-priced tickets.

Verlander, an A.L. MVP and Cy Young Award winner for Detroit, agreed to a $180 million, seven-year deal with the Tigers that is the richest for a pitcher and prevents him from becoming a free agent after the 2014 season.

Posey, the batting champion who led San Francisco to a pair of World Series titles in the last three years, received $167 million, nine-year deal from the Giants. The catcher could not have gone on the market until after the 2016 season.

Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig expects revenue to top $8 billion for the first time this year.

“It’s quite a story when you think back in 1992 it was $1.2 billion,” he said this week. “We’ve come a long way. It’s a manifestation of how popular this sport is in every way.”

MLB last year agreed to eight-year contracts with News Corp’s Fox and with Turner Sports that run from 2014-21 and increase average annual revenue from about $500 million to roughly $800 million. ESPN and MLB reached a deal covering 2014-21 that hikes the average yearly payment from about $360 million to approximately $700 million.

Clearing the bases

The Oakland Athletics have designated for assignment infielder Daric Barton, who was their longest-tenured player, and left-handed pitcher Travis Blackley. … The Colorado Rockies have designated Ramon Hernandez for assignment, and they could be responsible for paying the catcher $3.2 million this year if they are unable to trade him. … Pitcher Freddy Garcia agreed to a minor league contract with the Baltimore Orioles, five days after he was released by the San Diego Padres. … First baseman Paul Goldschmidt and the Arizona Diamondbacks are close to agreement on a $32 million, five-year contract that would run from 2014-18.


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