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Russell Martin to Toronto: 5 years, $82 million

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The Toronto Blue Jays have reportedly signed free agent catcher Russell Martin to a 5 year, $82 million deal

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Toronto Blue Jays have reportedly signed free agent catcher Russell Martin to a 5 year, $82 million deal.  That averages out to a little over $18 $16 million per season.

This is an interesting move by the Jays, as it locks up Martin through his age 32-36 season on the heels of his best season as a professional.  Martin gets good marks for his framing, defense and leadership, and put up a 5.5 bWAR last season, after having a 4.3 bWAR this year before.

However, his .290/.402/.430 slash line in 2014 seems to be unsustainable -- he had a .226/.327/.377 line in 2013, and a .211/.311/.377 slash line in 2012 -- and catchers don't, as a group, tend to age well.  The Jays would seem to be paying him primarily for his glove, with any offensive production that comes close to his 2014 levels as a bonus.

Martin received a qualifying offer from Pittsburgh, so Toronto will forfeit a first round draft pick for signing Martin.