The Texas Rangers agreed to sign first baseman and designated hitter Mike Napoli to a one-year deal on Tuesday.
Media reports suggest that Napoli's deal is worth $8.5 million and could include a club option. An announcement probably will not come until next week.
The contract represents a return to Texas for Napoli, who spent two seasons there from 2011 through 2012.
Napoli enjoyed an offensive revolution across the board last year, posting career highs in home runs and RBIs. Overall, though, he posted a .239/.335/.465 with 34 home runs and 101 RBIs with the Indians, helping to lead them to the World Series.
While his numbers, on paper, look excellent, Napoli's wRC+ of 113 and poor defense resulted in a WAR of just 1.0. The upside offensively is still there, but at 35, there is a good chance he will not be able to repeat his good year.
Regardless, this does not mean that he cannot serve a purpose in Texas. In 2017, Napoli projects to serve as the primary first baseman, fitting in the middle of the order around Adrian Beltre, Jonathan Lucroy and Rougned Odor.
The Rangers' 2016 first baseman, Mitch Moreland, left the team to go sign with the Boston Red Sox.
Napoli was one of the big remaining free agents with Spring Training right around the corner. Matt Wieters, Travis Wood and others still remain unsigned as pitchers and catchers begin to report this Sunday.
Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram was the first to report the agreement between the sides, and Jim Bowden of ESPN reported the details.