NEW YORK — AL MVP Josh Donaldson and the Blue Jays are nearing agreement on a $28.65 million, two-year contract, according to several published reports.
Donaldson, 30, and the Blue Jays had been scheduled for a salary arbitration hearing next week. The third baseman had asked for a raise from $4.3 million to $11.8 million and Toronto had offered $11.35 million when the sides exchanged proposed arbitration salaries last month.
Acquired from the A's in November 2014, Donaldson made the AL All-Star team for the second straight season. He led the majors with 122 runs, topped the AL with 123 RBIs and hit .297 with 41 home runs to help the Blue Jays reach the playoffs for the first time since winning consecutive World Series in 1992 and '93.
TANAKA HEALING: Yankees right-hander Masahiro Tanaka, coming back after October arthroscopic surgery to remove a bone spur from his right elbow, threw off a bullpen mound in New York. Yankees pitching coach Larry Rothschild said all the reports are good regarding Tanaka's rehabilitation program.
PROGRESS FOR DARVISH: Rangers right-hander Yu Darvish said he feels stronger than he did before elbow surgery and has a renewed passion for the game after missing all of last season. Darvish hopes to start throwing bullpen sessions next month in Arizona. He plans to be back on the mound by mid May or early June.
MARINERS: Former Rays right-handed reliever Joel Peralta agreed to a minor-league contract and will report to big-league spring training. Peralta, 39, had a 4.34 ERA in 33 games with the Dodgers last season.
ORIOLES: Third baseman Patrick Palmeiro, 26, a son of former star first baseman Rafael Palmeiro, agreed to a minor-league contract. The younger Palmeiro played last season for Sugar Land of the independent Atlantic League.
PADRES: Outfielder Skip Schumaker agreed to a minor-league contract and will be invited to big-league spring training.
WHITE SOX: Right-hander Mat Latos agreed to a $3 million, one-year contract. Latos, 28, has a 3.51 ERA in seven seasons but posted a 4.95 ERA in 22 games last season with the Marlins, Dodgers and Angels.