Sports / ArcaMax

Russell Martin says Pirates did all they could to sign him

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- The Pirates' mid-November acquisition of catcher Francisco Cervelli signaled their realization of what was rapidly coming to light: The market for Russell Martin was reaching a point at which they were not comfortable. Martin saw it another way. "I was almost relieved," he said Tuesday. "I was like, 'OK, there's a guy who can actually do some things defensively and kind of fill in.' " About a week after the Pirates acquired Cervelli, Martin signed a five-year, $82 million contract with the Toronto Blue Jays that returned him to his native Canada. The 32-year-old catcher will make $20 million per year in 2017, 2018 and 2019, when he will be 34, 35 and 36 -- top-tier ...

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