**Related Video Above: Cleveland Guardians getting ready during this year’s spring training.**
CLEVELAND (AP) — The Cleveland Guardians are close to signing All-Star second baseman Andrés Giménez to a long-term contract, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press Tuesday.
Giménez, who batted .297 and won a Gold Glove for the AL Central champions last season, could sign the deal within days, according to the person who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the team has not announced any agreement.
The Guardians also are nearing a deal with reliever Trevor Stephan, the person said.
A year ago, the team announced All-Star third baseman José Ramírez’s seven-year, $141 million new contract on the eve of opening day. Now, they’re on the verge of locking up Giménez as they embark on 2023.
The 24-year-old Giménez has quickly developed into one of the league’s best all-around middle infielders. He hit 17 homers, drove in 69 runs and stole 20 bases last season and was one of four Gold Glove winners for Cleveland.
Giménez came to the Guardians in 2021 as part of the trade that sent shortstop Francisco Lindor to the New York Mets.
Stephan was an invaluable piece of Cleveland’s strong bullpen last season. The right-hander went 6-5 with a 2.69 ERA and three saves in 66 games.
The Guardians are leaving their spring training complex Tuesday for Seattle, where they’ll open the season on Thursday against the Mariners.