Bryant gets $10.85M, record for 1st arbitration eligible

Cubs' Bryant gets $10.85M, record for 1st arbitration eligible

But before all of that can start, there's some business to take care of.

Bryant's contract edges out the previous record holder - Phillies legend Ryan Howard - by $850,000.

Five of the six players eligible for arbitration reportedly agreed to deals with the team Friday with only Justin Grimm on the outside looking in.

Bryant's $10.85 million salary is more than 10 times last year's $1.05 million payday, which was also a record for a pre-arbitration-eligible player.

Coming off a 2017 season riddled with injuries, off-the-field issues and a batting average that has yet to catch up to his elite defensive skills, the 23-year-old Russell has been the subject of trade rumors recently.

Bryant, the 2016 National League MVP during he Cubs' historic World Series-winning campaign, has 94 home runs in three MLB seasons. The 27-year-old is eligible for free agency after the 2019 season.

For players and teams who fail to reach agreements, hearings will be scheduled for January 29-Feb. The Cubs re-signed a plethora of players before Friday's deadline. Arbitration hearings are set up for next month, though the two sides could reach an agreement before then.

Russell had an up and down season that was marked with both personal and professional challenges, hitting just.239 with 12 home runs and 43 RBI in 385 plate appearances.

Baseball's current collective bargaining agreement provides language that allows clubs a wide lens to analyze a player's contributions, "including but not limited to his overall performance, special qualities of leadership and public appeal".

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