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Mar 22, 2024 2:20 am

Reports: Mets land J.D. Martinez for one year, $12M

J.D. Martinez

The New York Mets beefed up their batting order by agreeing to a one-year, $12 million deal with designated hitter J.D. Martinez, multiple media outlets reported Thursday.

The contract reportedly will pay Martinez just $4.5 million in 2024, with the rest deferred to be paid $1.5 million annually from 2034-2038. The deferrals will save the Mets significant money in terms of luxury tax.

Martinez, 36, was an All-Star for the third season in a row last year, the sixth selection of his career. In his lone season with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Martinez hit .271 with a .321 on-base percentage, a .572 slugging percentage, 33 homers and 103 RBIs over 113 games in 2023.

He lost his spot in Los Angeles when the team signed two-way star Shohei Ohtani, who will be limited to designated hitter duties for most or all of this year while recovering from an arm injury.

Martinez spent the previous five years in Boston, helping the Red Sox win the 2018 World Series, a year in which he led the majors with 130 RBIs.

Martinez previously played for the Houston Astros (2011-13), Detroit Tigers (2014-17) and the Arizona Diamondbacks (2017). In 1,522 career games, he has a .287/.350/.524 batting line with 315 home runs and 1,002 RBIs.

Mark Vientos was the likely candidate to be the Mets’ regular designated hitter before Martinez’s arrival. Vientos, 24, hit .211/.253/.367 with nine homers and 22 RBIs in 65 games last year.

The Mets are coming off a disappointing 75-87 season in 2023, when they had the major leagues’ highest payroll.

–Field Level Media

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