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Giancarlo Stanton, Marlins agree on $6.5 million deal

    The Marlins avoided arbitration with all three of their eligible players -- Giancarlo Stanton, Steve Cishek and Mike Dunn -- before Friday's 1 p.m. deadline.

    Stanton landed the biggest contract of the three, agreeing to a 1-year, $6.5 million contract. According to Ken Rosenthal of Foxsports.com, Stanton will also receive a $100,000 bonus by reaching 600 plate appearances.

    Stanton's contract is not a Marlins' team record for a first-year arbitration player. That mark belongs to Miguel Cabrera, who landed a $7.4 million deal in 2007.

    One-year deals were also worked out for Cishek ($3.8 million) and Dunn ($1.4 million).

    Had the Marlins not reached agreements by Friday's deadline, they would have gone to a hearing with the players and have an arbitrator settle the dispute. Cabrera had his '07 contract settled in that manner.

    The question now becomes: Will it be the last contract Stanton signs with the Marlins? The two sides have not discussed a long-term extension, and with two arbitration years remaining, the team could decide the best time to trade might be after the upcoming season. Or, they could make Stanton an offer after the season, one that he could either accept or refuse.

    Stay tuned.