First baseman Cecil Fielder became the second-highest paid player in baseball, agreeing to a $36-million, five-year contract with the Detroit Tigers.
Fielder, who has led the major leagues in RBIs for three consecutive seasons, gets a record $10-million signing bonus in the new deal, topping the $9 million set last month by David Cone of the Kansas City Royals.
Fielder, with his $7.2-million annual average, trails only Barry Bonds, who will average $7,291,667 under his $43.75-million, six-year contract with the San Francisco Giants.
Fielder made $4.5 million last year, tied for eighth most in the majors. His new contract calls for salaries of $2.2 million in the first two seasons and $7.2 million per year in the final three.