March 26, 2008 / 8:10 AM / 12 years ago

Cabrera and Tigers agree on mammoth deal

Miguel Cabrera hits a two-RBI single during a National League game at Shea Stadium in New York, September 28, 2007. REUTERS/Jeff Zelevansky

DETROIT (Reuters) - Miguel Cabrera and the Detroit Tigers finalized an eight-year $152.3 million deal on Tuesday, making the third baseman one of Major League Baseball’s highest paid players.

Obtained in a blockbuster off-season trade with the Florida Marlins that also brought pitcher Dontrelle Willis to the Motor City, the Tigers had made signing Cabrera to a long-term deal a priority.

Before locking himself into a multi-year deal, the four-time All Star wanted to see how he fit in with the Tigers and with Spring Training coming to an end decided Detroit was a good fit.

“I felt that the first day I got here,” Cabrera told MLB.com. “I feel good here. I feel this is my home.”

The $152.3 million deal, reported on the Tigers’ Web site (http://detroit.tigers.mlb.com), is the fourth richest in the major leagues, trailing only the New York Yankees tandem of Alex Rodriguez ($275 million) and Derek Jeter ($189 million) and Boston Red Sox slugger Manny Ramirez ($160 million).

Cabrera brings another booming bat to the Tigers’ explosive offense that is expected to rank among the best in the major leagues this season. The 24-year-old hit .320 last season with career highs of 34 home runs and 119 RBI.

The Venezuelan has a .313 career batting average, with 138 home runs and 523 RBI and is the third-fastest player in major league history to reach 500 RBI.

Writing by Steve Keating in Toronto; Editing by Sonia Oxley

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