Josh Donaldson signs one-year deal with Braves

After a successful first season as general manager of the Atlanta Braves, Alex Anthopoulos has brought a familiar face into the fold.

The Braves and slugger Josh Donaldson have agreed to a one-year, $23-million contract, sources told The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal.

Donaldson was the biggest acquisition for Anthopoulos during his tenure as GM of the Toronto Blue Jays. The third-baseman was shipped north of the border in late 2014 for a package including Brett Lawrie, Sean Nolin, Kendall Graveman, and Franklin Barreto.

In his first season with the Blue Jays, Donaldson was named the American League MVP after leading Toronto to its first postseason appearance while posting a .297/.371/.568 slash line, 41 home runs, and 123 RBIs.

The injury bug has started to plague Donaldson as of late. He’s only managed to play in 165 games over the past two seasons due to ongoing issues with his calf.

Donaldson made 36 appearances with the Jays in 2018, hitting .234/.333/.423 with five homers and 16 RBIs.

On the day of the waiver trade deadline, the Jays dealt him to the Cleveland Indians for minor-league prospect Julian Merryweather.

Donaldson returned to the majors down the stretch with the Indians. He hit .280/.400/.520 with three home runs and six RBIs. Donaldson posted a .091 batting average in the Indians’ lone playoff series against the Houston Astros.

The 32-year-old is betting on himself with a one-year agreement. He’ll be the starting third baseman in a Braves infield that already features youngsters Dansby Swanson and Ozzie Albies, as well as three-time All-Star Freddie Freeman.

The Braves also signed veteran catcher Brian McCann to a one-year, $2-million deal on Monday. The 34-year-old was originally drafted by Atlanta in the second round of the 2002 MLB Draft and spent his first nine major-league seasons with the Braves.

He spent the last five seasons of his career with the New York Yankees and Houston.

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