At six years and around $60 million, Yu Darvish's deal isn't a whopper by traditional standards. However, just negotiating with the 25-year-old Japanese phenom cost the Rangers a pretty penny. Texas anted up a record $51.7 million posting bid for exclusive negotiating rights for a pitcher they hope will turn into a bona fide ace, bringing his price tag north of $111 million.
The New York Yankees made the first impact on the free-agent market. They kept left-hander CC Sabathia from testing the waters, signing him to a one-year extension that adds $30 million to his deal, which now runs through 2015.
Prince Fielder agreed to a nine-year, $214 million deal with the Detroit Tigers on Jan. 24. The move came as a surprise, as the Tigers didn't seem to be in the running until Fielder's agent, Scott Boras, pulled off another shocker.
Getty ImagesChristian Petersen
On Dec. 8, the Los Angeles Angels stunned the baseball world by giving free-agent first baseman Albert Pujols a 10-year guaranteed, $240 million contract. The game’s premier hitter and quality first baseman turned down a nine-year deal in the $190 million to $200 million range to re-sign with the Cardinals last spring and now waves bye-bye to the only team he's ever played for.
On Dec. 8, Wilson signed a five-year, $77.5 million deal with the Angels, although he was overshadowed by new teammate Albert Pujols. The versatile Wilson logged back-to-back 200-plus innings as a starter after solid effort out of bullpen. With pitching a scarce commodity he found an inflated market.
After the season that their center fielder had in 2011, the Dodgers weren't about to let him get away. The team and Kemp agreed to an eight-year, $160 million extension in November. The deal kept the Dodgers and their superstar from going to arbitration.
Right-hander Tim Lincecum agreed to a two-year contract with the Giants closing an interesting arbitration case. Lincecum was said to be requesting a whopping $21.5 million per year, while the Giants countered with an offer of $17 million. Eventually, both sides agreed to the two-year, $40.5 million deal.
Getty ImagesKevin C. Cox
The new-look Marlins continued to make headlines early in the offseason with the signing of former Mets shortstop Jose Reyes. Miami signed the free agent to a six-year, $106 million deal.
On Nov. 11, the Philadelphia Phillies nabbed closer Jonathan Papelbon with a four-year, $50-million deal that includes with a vesting option for 2016. It's the biggest overall deal ever for a closer. He went 31 for 34 in save situations for the Red Sox last year.