ATLANTA (AP) — The Atlanta Braves and third baseman Chris Johnson have agreed to a $23.5 million, three-year contract covering 2015-17.
Johnson is making $4.75 million this season under a one-year deal. The agreement announced Friday includes salaries of $6 million next year, $7.5 million in 2016 and $9 million in 2017. Atlanta has a $10 million option for 2018 with a $1 million buyout.
Johnson would have been eligible for free agency after the 2016 season.
The 29-year-old was one of the Braves' biggest surprises last season. A supposed throw-in to the Justin Upton trade, Johnson ranked second in the NL with a .321 average. He had 12 homers and 68 RBIs.
The signing of Johnson continues the Braves' recent trend of giving core players long-term deals, a group that includes Freddie Freeman, Craig Kimbrel and Julio Teheran.