The Texas Rangers have agreed on one-year contracts with All-Star slugger Joey Gallo and likely starting center fielder Danny Santana, and will avoid a salary arbitration hearing for the 20th year in a row.
Gallo, an All-Star for the first time last year in an injury-shortened season, agreed Friday to a $4.4 million deal. The outfielder has hit 103 homers with 221 RBIs in 363 games the past three seasons.
Santana got a $3.6 million agreement. Right-handed reliever Rafael Montero, the team's only other player eligible for arbitration, agreed on a $785,000 contract.
Gallo made $605,500 last year when he had 22 homers and 49 RBIs in 70 games before surgery in late July to remove part of a bone from his right wrist. He homered for the American League in its 4-3 win in the All-Star Game.
Santana went to spring training with Texas on a minor league contract last year. He started the season at Triple-A Nashville, but then played seven different positions for the Rangers while hitting .283 with 28 homers and 81 RBIs in 130 games. He got an increase from a $750,000 base salary to $3.6 million.
The Rangers will go to spring training this year with Santana as their center fielder after Delino DeShields was traded to Cleveland in the deal that brought two-time Cy Young winner Corey Kluber home to Texas.
The Rangers haven't had a salary arbitration hearing since 2000, with first baseman/outfielder Lee Stevens.