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Marlins avoid arbitration with Stanton, Cishek, Dunn

Marlins avoid arbitration with Stanton, Cishek, Dunn

MIAMI -- Negotiations went down to the wire on Friday before the Marlins confirmed that they have reached one-year contract agreements with Giancarlo Stanton, Steve Cishek and Mike Dunn.

The deals mean the club came to terms with all three of its arbitration-eligible players, avoiding hearings in February.

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All three were arbitration-eligible for the first time, and they will receive significant raises in 2014. Per team policy, the Marlins don't release financial terms. But according to sources, Stanton will earn $6.5 million, Cishek will receive $3.8 million and Dunn will make $1.4 million.

In 2013, Stanton made $537,000, while Cishek received $505,000 and Dunn earned $492,500.

Friday was a key day because of the 1 p.m. ET salary exchange deadline.

The Marlins have a club policy of breaking off negotiations if an agreement isn't reached by the deadline. In that scenario, the player and club would have exchanged figures and the salary would have been determined by an arbitration panel in February.

Because of Stanton's impressive power numbers, it was believed the right fielder would challenge Miami's highest first-year arbitration record of $7.4 million, awarded at a hearing to Miguel Cabrera in 2007.

Before last season, the Marlins stated publicly that they would consider offering Stanton a multiyear contract. Since that did not occur, it is becoming increasingly more likely that Stanton is ready to play out his final arbitration seasons and test free agency when he is first eligible in 2017.

The Marlins, meanwhile, could go year to year with the slugger through 2016. Without a long-term contract in place, the 24-year-old promises to continue to be the subject of trade speculation.

One of the most imposing sluggers in the game, Stanton endured a rough 2013, by his standards. Injuries limited the right fielder to 116 games, and he finished with 24 home runs and 62 RBIs. Stanton batted .249 with a .365 on-base percentage and a .480 slugging percentage.

Promoted to the big leagues at age 20 in 2010, Stanton has posted impressive numbers. In fact, since he arrived on June 8 of that year, his 117 home runs are the fourth most of any player in the big leagues. Only Cabrera (139), Jose Bautista (134) and Adrian Beltre (119) have more in that time frame.

Stanton enters the season ranked eighth on Miami's all-time home run list. He should move up quickly through the ranks in '14. Stanton is 37 homers shy of Dan Uggla's club record of 154.

Cishek, the sidearm-throwing closer, got better as 2013 progressed. The 27-year-old right-hander converted 34 of 36 save chances, including a streak of 29 straight to close the season.

Cishek appeared in 69 games and posted a 2.33 ERA, with a WHIP of 1.08. After the All-Star break, he was particularly effective, reflected by his 0.96 ERA in 27 appearances.

Dunn, meanwhile, has been a durable and dependable lefty at the back end of the bullpen. In '13, he had a 2.66 ERA in 67 2/3 innings.

Dunn also flirted with setting a team record for appearances in a season. He was in 75 games, which tied him with Robb Nen (1996) and Juan Carlos Oviedo (2009) for the third most by a Miami reliever. The club mark is 78, set by Braden Looper in 2002. Vladimir Nunez was second with 77 appearances.

Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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