Robinson Cano, the grand prize of this year's free-agent class, has decided to sign with the Seattle Mariners.
The Mariners and Cano have agreed on a 10-year contract worth $240 million, according to ESPN. That would match the terms of Albert Pujols' contract with the Angels and tie for the most lucrative deal ever given to a player besides Alex Rodriguez.
Cano, the first baseball client of rap star Jay-Z's Roc Nation Sports, had initially told the New York Yankees he would stay for $310 million. The second baseman recently asked the Yankees for about $260 million, according to reports in New York, but the Yankees indicated that they might not go past $175 million.
The Yankees have signed two free agents -- outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury and catcher Brian McCann -- for a total of $238 million.
The Mariners, desperate for offense and fan interest, have not posted a winning record since 2009 and have not appeared in the playoffs since 2001, when they set an American League record with 116 victories. Since then, attendance has fallen from 3.51 million to 1.76 million.
The Mariners also are expected to make a heavy push to acquire ace David Price in a trade with the Tampa Bay Rays.
Cano hit .314 with 27 home runs, 107 runs batted in and an .899 OPS for the Yankees last season. He finished fifth in MVP balloting, his fourth consecutive finish among the top six.
In the year before he signed with the Angels, Pujols batted .299 with 37 home runs, 99 RBI and a .906 OPS. He finished fifth in MVP balloting, with three MVP awards and a top-10 finish in each of his 11 seasons in St. Louis.
Pujols, whose first two seasons in Anaheim were marked by injury and underperformance, started his contract at age 32. Cano would start his at 31.
Pujols also has an additional 10-year, $10-million personal-services contract with the Angels that takes effect after his career ends. Such deals are no longer allowed.