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Rangers avoid arbitration with Moreland

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SURPRISE, Ariz. -- The Rangers avoided another arbitration hearing when they agreed to a one-year contract with designated hitter Mitch Moreland.

Moreland agreed to a contract worth $2.65 million. Moreland was seeking $3.25 million through arbitration, and the Rangers initially offered $2.025 million. Moreland ended up signing just above the midpoint. His hearing was scheduled for Wednesday.

Moreland played in 147 games for the Rangers last year and hit .232 with 23 home runs and 60 RBIs. He had a .299 on-base percentage and a .437 slugging percentage. He has been the Rangers' starting first baseman the past three seasons but lost that job when they acquired Prince Fielder from the Tigers. Moreland is now expected to be the Rangers' primary designated hitter.

The Rangers have not had an arbitration hearing with a player since Jon Daniels became general manager after the 2005 season. Their last arbitration hearing was in 2000 with Lee Stevens.

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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