Atlanta Braves’ Jason Heyward celebrates in the dugout after scoring on a single against the Milwaukee Brewers in the sixth inning at their MLB National League baseball game in Atlanta, Georgia September 24, 2013. (REUTERS: Tami Chappell)
The Atlanta Braves agreed to terms with first baseman Freddie Freeman on a contract extension, avoiding salary arbitration, CBSSports.com’s Jon Heyman reported Tuesday.
Just hours before Freeman’s deal, the Braves and outfielder Jason Heyward agreed on a two-year contract, avoiding arbitration as well.
Freeman’s extension will be in the $100 million range, FoxSports.com reported.
The 24-year-old All-Star is coming off a 2013 season in which he batted .319 with 23 homers and 109 RBIs in 147 games.
Though no financial details were disclosed by the Braves for Heyward, local media estimated the deal to be worth a guaranteed $13.3 million, along with performance incentives that could escalate his salary for the 2015 season.
“Jason is an important part of our organization and we’re glad that we were able to agree on a multiyear contract,” Braves general manager Frank Wren said.
Heyward hit .254 with 14 home runs and 38 RBIs in 104 games for the Braves in 2013, his fourth season in the majors. He batted .333 over his final 31 games of the season, including .322 in 29 games from the leadoff spot. The Braves right fielder twice went on the disabled list, as he underwent appendectomy surgery in late April and then sustained a fractured jaw when he was hit by a pitch in late August. The DL stints cost him a total of 49 games.
“You never know what is going to happen with the business side of things,” Heyward, 24, was quoted as saying on the Braves website. “You know what you want and you know you have to be prepared for the worst.
“I knew my agents were going to work with the Braves on something. Playing baseball is the most important thing here. Now we don’t have to go back and forth about the arbitration process and determining likes and dislikes, pros and cons.”