Tigers exercise Avila's $5.4 million option
Avila, who turns 28 in January, hit .218 with 11 home runs and 47 RBIs last season, although concussion problems have become a concern over the last couple years. Detroit would have owed him a $200,000 buyout if it had declined the option.
In 2014, Avila fell 43 plate appearances short of a $100,000 escalator for next season. Avila has been unable to repeat his terrific season of 2011, when he hit .295 with 19 home runs, but he has a career on-base percentage of .345 and can hit with power. He's also respected for his defense.