From Comcast SportsNetSEATTLE (AP) -- Felix Hernandez and the Seattle Mariners are working on a 175 million, seven-year contract that would make him the highest-paid pitcher in baseball, according to a person with knowledge of the deal's details.The person spoke to The Associated Press Thursday on condition of anonymity because the agreement has not been completed. USA Today first reported the deal.Seattle would add 134.5 million of guaranteed money over five years to the contract of the 2010 AL Cy Young Award winner, whose current agreement calls for him to receive 40.5 million over the next two seasons.Hernandez's total dollars would top CC Sabathia's original 161 million, seven-year contract with the New York Yankees and his 25 million average would surpass Zack Greinke's 24.5 million under his new contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers and tie him for the second-highest in baseball with Josh Hamilton and Ryan Howard behind Alex Rodriguez (27.5 million). Hernandez's new money would average 26.9 million over five years.Hernandez agreed to a 78 million, five-year contract in January 2010 and has earned an additional 2.5 million in escalators and 300,000 in bonuses. He is due 20 million this year and 20.5 million in 2014, which would be superseded by the new deal.Seattle general manager Jack Zduriencik said he could not comment when reached on Thursday, and Hernandez's representatives didn't immediately return messages.If the deal is finalized, it would leave Detroit's Justin Verlander and the Dodgers' Clayton Kershaw as the most attractive pitchers eligible for free agency after the 2014 season. Tampa Bay's David Price is eligible after the 2015 season.Hernandez has become the face of Seattle's struggling franchise, transforming from a curly haired 19-year-old who wore his hat crooked to one of the most dominant and exciting pitchers in baseball. Known as "King Felix," he became the first Seattle pitcher to throw a perfect game in a 1-0 win over Tampa Bay last August.His fiery enthusiasm on the mound and his willingness to first sign a long-term deal in 2010 have endeared him to fans in the Pacific Northwest who have gone more than a decade without seeing postseason baseball.Hernandez, who will turn 27 on April 8, is 98-76 with a 3.22 ERA in eight seasons with the Mariners. He won a career-high 19 games in 2009 when he finished second in the Cy Young voting then won the award a year later when he went just 13-12 but had a 2.27 ERA and 232 strikeouts.Hernandez appeared to be making another Cy Young push last year before going 0-4 in his last six starts, which left him at 13-9 with 223 strikeouts.His career record would be even better if he didn't play with one of baseball's worst offenses. Seattle had the lowest batting average in the major leagues in each of the last three seasons. Hernandez has taken 10 losses during that span when he's given up two earned runs or less.For his career, Hernandez has allowed two earned runs or less in 141 of 238 starts, but the team is only 99-42 in those games due to the offensive problems.Locking up Hernandez long-term won't solve all of the problems that have left Seattle looking up at Texas, Oakland and the Los Angeles Angles in the AL West for most of the last 10 years. The Mariners have tried to address some of those issues this offseason by trading for Kendrys Morales and Michael Morse to provide more punch to go along with young prospects Dustin Ackley, Kyle Seager and Jesus Montero, who have all shown flashes early in their careers.But should the deal be finalized, the Mariners at least have the security of knowing who'll be at the top of their rotation for most of this decade.
Yoan Moncada and Jose Abreu are back together.
The two Cuban natives were teammates in 2012 when they played for Cienfuegos in Cuba, and now they'll be in the same dugout once again — this time in Chicago.
"To get the opportunity to play with him right now in the United States, it's an honor for me," Moncada said through a translator on a conference call Wednesday. "I'm thrilled with that."
NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. -- In today's game, teams are sure to do their homework when bringing in a star player. For either a big free agent or trade acquisition, clubs want to know everything they can about the individual.
New starter Chris Sale passes that test for the Red Sox.
"There's always an on-field (personality) and away from the game (to consider),'' said Dave Dombrowski, the Red Sox' president of baseball operations. "On the field, he's as competitive as can be. He's got an edge to him - a good edge. His teammates love him.
"Off the field, I've heard a lot of pleasant things about him. I've heard tremendous things from him as an individual. A couple of our guys in the organization know him very well and say real good things about him.''
Sale was involved in two clubhouse incidents last season - one in which he angrily confronted White Sox president Kenny Williams about his decision to limit the amount of time Adam LaRoche's son could spend with the team, and another in which he cut up a throw-back uniform with scissors.
"I think you do your checking to see what causes some things,'' said Dombrowski. "But after I checked things, (I'm) not really (concerned).''
Another benefit to having Sale is that he could potentially take some pressure of David Price, who struggled at times in his first season in Boston and perhaps tried too hard to validate his $217 million contract.
"I think it's always good for a club if they have a number of guys, top of the rotation guys, to take the pressure off everybody else,'' Dombrowski said. "Because you know that everyone has a bad outing here and there, and somebody else picks you up in that case. I think that's helpful. If we didn't have (another No. 1 starter), I'd still have confidence in (Price).''
It's possible that the Red Sox could go into next season with as many as four lefthanders in their rotation -- Sale, Price, Eduardo Rodriguez and Drew Pomeranz.
"It's unusual to have four lefthanders, potentially, in the rotation,'' acknowledged Dombrowski. "A lot of times, you're looking for one. But if it was four lefties, that would be fine. I think it's more important that they get people out. I'd be comfortable with that.
"I've really never been in that spot before, which doesn't make me feel uncomfortable. I don't have a driving force to make any trades because four guys are lefties. I think they're good lefties.''