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Corey Hart to sign one-year, $5M deal with Mariners

By Matt Snyder | Baseball Writer

Corey Hart is headed to Seattle to bat behind Robinson Cano.
Corey Hart is headed to Seattle to bat behind Robinson Cano. (USATSI)

MORE: FA tracker: position players | FA tracker: pitchers | Winter Meetings updates

ORLANDO, Fla. -- Free-agent first baseman/outfielder Corey Hart is headed to Seattle to provide Robinson Cano protection in the batting order, as he has agreed to sign a one-year deal with the Mariners, according to Jon Heyman. The deal guarantees Hart $5 million, but he has the chance to run it up to $13 million if he reaches various incentives.

Hart, 31, missed all of the 2013 season with a right knee injury. In 2012, the two-time All-Star hit .270/.334/.507 with 35 doubles, 30 home runs and 83 RBI.

He's played mostly right field in his career but played 103 games at first base in 2012. Due to his knee issue, he's likely best served at first base or even DH.

Hart was drafted by Jack Zduriencik in 2000 when Zduriencik was the director of amateur scouting for the Brewers. Now the GM of the Mariners, it's a reunion of sorts for Zduriencik and Hart.

As for the Brewers, they were waiting on a Hart decision for the past several days, and now they know they've lost out on retaining him. Thus, it's on to Plan B, which reportedly includes discussing trades for either Ike Davis or Logan Morrison [Morrison is also headed to Seattle now] or signing free agent James Loney.

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