Adrian Beltre, Rangers Nearing Five-Year Contract Agreement

The Adrian Beltre negotiations have gone back and forth, as the free agent has searched for a home. For a long time, the Angels were considered the favorites to bring him in. Then, on Sunday, reports emerged that he was nearing an agreement with the Rangers. The next day, other reports suggested that the Rangers weren't optimistic about signing Beltre. And now, on Tuesday, we're back to where we were on Sunday - rumor has it that Beltre and the Rangers are close to an agreement.

Yahoo!'s Tim Brown suggests that a contract could be finalized as early as today, and while Brown's source pegs it as a six-year deal, Jon Morosi hears that it will instead be a five-year contract with a vesting sixth-year option. Jon Heyman chimes in to say that the total value is expected to be somewhere in the $90 - 100 million range. In other words, it looks like the reports on Sunday were right on.

Current Rangers third baseman Michael Young said on Monday that he'd be willing to move to DH to accommodate Beltre, which would make this situation a lot easier for Texas. While Young would prefer to play the field, Beltre is the superior player both at the plate and with the glove, and Young would be shifting in to fill another need. In the event of a Beltre signing, Young would presumably still get occasional action around the infield as a substitute.

So, from the looks of things, this is really happening. Not only are the Rangers set to make a big upgrade - they're stealing that upgrade away from a division rival who's had a dire need. The 31-year-old Beltre batted .321 last season with a .919 OPS, and he is perhaps the best defensive third baseman in baseball.

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