The Seattle Mariners and free-agent outfielder Jason Bay have reportedly agreed on a one-year contract worth slightly more than $1 million. Expected to alternate between the outfield and designated hitter, Bay is a British Columbia native and a graduate of Gonzaga University who most recently played for the New York Mets.
The 34-year-old Bay’s agreement with Seattle was first reported by the Associated Press and FOX Sports. The Mariners have not yet made Bay’s signing official.
Bay signed a four-year, $66 million deal with the Mets in 2010, but he endured three injury-plagued seasons in which the former three-time All-Star hit just 26 home runs with 124 RBIs. Last year, in 70 games, Bay hit .165 with eight homers and 20 RBIs. He spent more than a month on the disabled list with a broken rib and then missed another month with a concussion.
Bay was owed $16 million by the Mets for the 2013 season when they mutually agreed to terminate his contract last month.
Bay broke into the major leagues with San Diego in 2003. He later played for Pittsburgh (2003-08) and Boston (2008-09) before signing with the Mets. He was an All-Star in 2005, 2006 and 2009, and had his best overall season in 2005 when he hit .306 with 32 home runs. He also had a big year in 2009 with a career-high 36 home runs and 119 RBIs.
The 2004 National League Rookie of the Year, Bay won a Silver Slugger award in 2009, when he had a .921 OPS.
The Mariners are also reportedly interested in former Yankees Nick Swisher and Raul Ibanez, who had two stints with the Mariners (1996-00, ’04-08) and hit 19 homers for New York last season. Swisher is coming off a year in which he hit 24 home runs and drove in 93. He has hit at least 23 home runs for eight consecutive seasons.
Michael Bourn also reportedly interests Seattle and, if acquired, would become the club’s centerfielder and leadoff hitter