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Blue Jays, Turner strike one-year, $13M deal

Justin Turner Boston Red Sox Justin Turner - The Canadian Press

The Toronto Blue Jays and veteran third baseman Justin Turner are in agreement on a one-year, $13 million contract, TSN Blue Jays Reporter Scott Mitchell has confirmed.

The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal also reports the deal carries $1.5 million in roster and performance bonuses. 

Mitchell adds Turner is expected to be the primary designated hitter most days and also see time at third base, first base and second base. 

Turner had a nice season for the Boston Red Sox in 2023, slashing .276/.345/.455 with 23 home runs and a career-best 96 driven in. He joined the Red Sox on a two-year, $21.7 million deal that carried an opt-out after the first season. Turner declined a $13.4 million player option for next season, receiving a $6.7 million buyout instead.

The 39-year-old is a two-time All-Star with both of those times coming as a member of the Los Angeles Dodgers. Turner began his career with the Baltimore Orioles and played four seasons in a utility role with the New York Mets, but didn’t become a regular until he joined the Dodgers in 2014. He went on to help the club reach the postseason every year he played there, culminating in a World Series victory in 2020.

The Long Beach, Calif., native was selected in the seventh round of the 2006 MLB Draft out of Cal State Fullerton and made his MLB debut just over three years later in September of 2009.


Blue Jays off-season so far

Turner may be the biggest off-season move yet for the Blue Jays, who have been relatively quiet since coming up short in the Shohei Ohtani sweepstakes in December.

Turner joins infielder Isiah Kiner-Falefa and right-hander Yariel Rodriguez as notable off-season additions, and the team also brought back outfielder Kevin Kiermaier on a one-year deal.

Toronto is scheduled to open their spring training schedule on Feb. 24 against the Philadelphia Phillies.