Reliever agrees to two-year deal
NEW YORK -- Greg Maddux left Atlanta, Ivan Rodriguez said goodbye to Florida and the New York Mets welcomed Japanese shortstop Kazuo Matsui on a busy Sunday night in baseball.
Around the league, teams and players negotiated last minute deals, entered arbitration or moved toward cutting ties as the late night deadline approached.
Teams had until midnight to offer arbitration to their former players who became free agents, and players offered arbitration have until Dec. 19 to accept the offers. Those players not offered arbitration can't re-sign until May 1.
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Baltimore: B.J. Surhoff, dh.
Chicago: Bartolo Colon, rhp; x-Tom Gordon, rhp.
Cleveland: Terry Mulholland, lhp.
Minnesota: Eddie Guardado, lhp.
New York: John Flaherty, c; Andy Pettitte, lhp; David Wells, lhp; Gabe White, lhp.
Oakland: Keith Foulke, rhp; Ricardo Rincon, lhp; Miguel Tejada, ss.
Seattle: Pat Borders, c.
Texas: John Thomson, rhp. National League
Atlanta: Julio Franco, 1b.
Colorado: Greg Norton, 3b; Mark Sweeney, of.
Los Angeles: Wilson Alvarez, lhp; Paul Quantrill, rhp.
Milwaukee: Eduardo Perez, c; John Vander Wal, of.
New York: John Franco, lhp.
Philadelphia: Kevin Millwood, rhp; Dan Plesac, lhp.
St. Louis: Orlando Palmeiro, of.
Anaheim: Eric Owens of; Scott Spiezio 1b.
Baltimore: Tony Batista, 3b; Albert Belle, of; Hector Carrasco, rhp; Deivi Cruz, ss; Scott Erickson, rhp; Brook Fordyce, c; Kerry Ligtenberg, rhp.
Boston: John Burkett, rhp; Bill Haselman, c; Todd Jones, rhp; Robert Person, rhp; Jeff Suppan, rhp; Todd Walker, 2b.
Chicago: Roberto Alomar, 2b; Carl Everett, of; Tony Graffanino, ss; Scott Sullivan, rhp.
Cleveland: Ellis Burks, dh.
Detroit: Shane Halter, 3b; Matt Walbeck, c.
Kansas City: Mike DiFelice, c; Alan Levine, rhp; Jose Lima, rhp; Graeme Lloyd, lhp; Brent Mayne, c; Tom Prince, c; Rondell White, of; Jamey Wright, rhp.
Minnesota: Chris Gomez, 2b; Denny Hocking, 2b; Rick Reed, rhp; Kenny Rogers, lhp.
New York: Roger Clemens, rhp; Jeff Nelson, rhp; Antonio Osuna, rhp.
Oakland: Jose Guillen, of; Steve Sparks, rhp.
Seattle: Armando Benitez, rhp; Mike Cameron, of; John Mabry, of; Mark McLemore, ss; Arthur Rhodes, lhp; Rey Sanchez, ss.
Tampa Bay: Ben Grieve, dh; Travis Lee, 1b; Al Martin, dh; Rey Ordonez, ss; Terry Shumpert, dh.
Texas: Juan Gonzalez, of; Rafael Palmeiro, dh; Ismael Valdes, rhp.
Toronto: Mike Bordick, ss; Cory Lidle, rhp. National League
Arizona: Miguel Batista, rhp; Mark Grace, 1b; Felix Jose, of; Raul Mondesi, of; Mike Myers, lhp.
Atlanta: Darren Bragg, of; Vinny Castilla, 3b; Matt Franco, 1b; Roberto Hernandez, rhp; Darren Holmes; Javy Lopez, c; Greg Maddux, rhp; Kent Mercker, lhp; Shane Reynolds, rhp; Gary Sheffield, of.
Chicago: Antonio Alfonseca, rhp; Shawn Estes, lhp; Doug Glanville, of; Mark Guthrie, lhp; Eric Karros, 1b; Kenny Lofton, of; Troy O'Leary, of; Dave Veres, rhp; Tony Womack, ss.
Colorado: Darren Oliver, lhp; Chris Stynes, 3b; Gregg Zaun, c.
Florida: Chad Fox, rhp; Rick Helling, rhp; Todd Hollandsworth, of; Ivan Rodriguez, c; Ugueth Urbina, rhp.
Houston: Orlando Merced, of; Brian Moehler, rhp; Ron Villone, lhp; Rick White, rhp.
Los Angeles: Andy Ashby, rhp; Jeromy Burnitz, of; Ron Coomer, 1b; Rickey Henderson, of; Brian Jordan, of; Fred McGriff, 1b.
Milwaukee: Royce Clayton, ss; Keith Osik, c; Todd Ritchie, rhp; Glendon Rusch, lhp.
Montreal: Wil Cordero, 1b; Vladimir Guerrero, of; Jose Mercedes, rhp; Fernando Tatis, 3b; Todd Zeile, 3b.
New York: Pedro Astacio, rhp; Jay Bell, 2b; Tony Clark, 1b.
Philadelphia: Terry Adams, rhp; Jose Mesa, rhp; Kelly Stinnett, c; Turk Wendell, rhp; Mike Williams, rhp.
Pittsburgh: Pat Meares, 2b; Jeff Reboulet, 2b; Pokey Reese, 2b; Reggie Sanders, of; Matt Stairs, of; Julian Tavarez, rhp.
St. Louis: Miguel Cairo, 2b; Mike DeJean, rhp; Jeff Fassero, lhp; Joe Girardi, c; Sterling Hitchcock, lhp; Lance Painter, rhp; Eduardo A. Perez, of; Russ Springer, rhp; Garrett Stephenson, rhp; Brett Tomko, rhp; Fernando Vina, 2b.
San Francisco: Rich Aurilia, ss; Marvin Benard, of; Jose Cruz Jr., of; Andres Galarraga, 1b; Sidney Ponson, rhp; Benito Santiago, c; Tim Worrell, rhp; Eric Young, 2b.
Seattle Mariners: Reliever Shigetoshi Hasegawa agreed to a $6.3 million, two-year contract.
"I was really holding my breath on this one," Mariners manager Bob Melvin said. "Re-signing Shiggy, as valuable and versatile as he is, was a priority for us."
The 35-year-old right-hander gets a $500,000 signing bonus and salaries of $2.5 million next season and $2,975,000 in 2005. Seattle has a $3.1 million option for 2006 that could become guaranteed under certain conditions. There is a $325,000 buyout.
The Mariners didn't offer salary arbitration to Gold Glove outfielder Mike Cameron, who spent four seasons in Seattle. He arrived in the trade that sent Ken Griffey Jr. to Cincinnati.
"I don't feel great about it," general manager Bill Bavasi said. "This guy filled some pretty big shoes. From the outside looking in, he made people forget Junior pretty quick."
Besides Cameron, the Mariners didn't offer arbitration to lefty reliever Arthur Rhodes, right-handed reliever Armando Benitez, outfielder John Mabry, infielder Mark McLemore and shortstop Rey Sanchez.
Raul Ibanez, a free agent who signed last month, will play in left with Ichiro Suzuki in right. Winn, who played in left last season, moves to center, though Bavasi acknowledged the team will consider upgrading.
Reed's deal, reached Sunday night, calls for a $600,000 salary next year. Colorado has a $650,000 option for 2005 with a $25,000 buyout.
Anaheim Angels: The Angels announced they would not offer salary arbitration to infielder Scott Spiezio and outfielder Eric Owens.
Arizona Diamondbacks: The Diamondbacks ended their three-year relationship with Miguel Batista when they failed to offer the free agent right-hander arbitration.
Diamondbacks general manager Joe Garagiola Jr. said that the team could not afford the "multiyear contract for significant dollars" that Batista wants.
The Diamondbacks let three other former players go -- outfielders Raul Mondesi and Felix Jose, and left-handed reliever Mike Myers. A fifth player, first baseman Mark Grace, has retired and will join the Arizona broadcast team.
Another player who would have been on the list, utility infielder Carlos Baerga, re-signed with the Diamondbacks on Friday.
The only free agent eligible for arbitration retained by Boston was David McCarty, an outfielder and first baseman who hit .407 in 16 games after being claimed on waivers from Oakland on Aug. 5. He agreed to a minor league contract and was invited to spring training.
If he is added to the major league roster, McCarty would get a $500,000, one-year deal.
Walker played one season for Boston at second base and hit .283 with 13 homers in 144 games. He wanted to return, but the Red Sox preferred that a better fielder who makes less money play the position.
The five homers broke a team playoff record of four set by Nomar Garciaparra and John Valentin in 1999.
Suppan, obtained from Pittsburgh just before the trade deadline on July 31, was a disappointment with a 3-4 record and 5.57 ERA in 11 games. Burkett went 12-9 with a 5.15 ERA in his second season with Boston.
Jones was 2-1 with a 5.52 ERA in 26 relief appearances after joining Boston on July 2 as a free agent after pitching 33 games for Colorado last season. Person pitched seven games for the Red Sox and spent most of the season in the minors.
Haselman went 0-for-3 in four games with Boston.
Burba would get a $440,000, one-year year contract if he's added to the major league roster. He could earn an additional $45,000 in performance bonuses.
Burba went 1-1 with a 3.53 ERA in two starts and 15 relief appearances over 43 1-3 innings last season for the Brewers, who signed him to a minor league contract in May and brought him up June 27. He faced a midnight EST deadline to re-sign.
Milwaukee offered salary arbitration to catcher Eddie Perez and outfielder John Vander Wal, according to Brewers director of media relations Jon Greenberg. They have until Dec. 19 to accept and may sign with the Brewers through Jan. 8.
While Vander Wal was not on the original list of 24 free agents offered arbitration compiled by the commissioner's office, he was later added.
Pittsburgh Pirates: The Pirates did not offer salary arbitration to free agents Reggie Sanders, Matt Stairs and Julian Tavarez.
The Pirates effectively cut ties to all four, even though they told Stairs at the end of last season that they wanted to re-sign him. Free agents not offered arbitration can't re-sign with their former clubs until May 1.
Sanders (.287, 31 homers and 85 RBIs) and Stairs (.292, 20 homers, 57 RBIs) were the Pirates' most consistent power hitters last season. But Sanders likely would have tripled his $1 million salary in arbitration, and the Pirates wanted to cut Stairs' salary from $900,000 to $700,000 despite his productive season.
Tavarez (3-3, 3.63 ERA, 11 saves) was the Pirates' most effective reliever in September, but they believe they can pick up a comparable pitcher on the open market. He made $750,000 last season.
General manager Dave Littlefield stockpiled a number of relatively inexpensive free agents by spring training -- Sanders, Stairs, Tavarez, outfielder Kenny Lofton and reliever Matt Herges among them. All had productive seasons, although Herges wound up with the Giants and Lofton was dealt to the Cubs.
Because they didn't offer arbitration, the Pirates will not receive draft picks as compensation from the teams that sign the players.
San Francisco Giants: The Giants brought back first baseman J.T. Snow and added outfielder Michael Tucker.
Snow agreed to a one-year contract with a team option for 2005 that guarantees him $1.75 million, while Tucker agreed to a $3.5 million, two-year deal.
The Giants declined his $6.5 million after the season.
His new deal calls for a $1.5 million salary next year and gives the Giants a $2 million option for 2005 with a $250,000 buyout. The option would become guaranteed if he has 450 plate appearances next season.
Tucker, a nine-year major league veteran, played at least 20 games in every outfield position last season for the Kansas City Royals and would be a likely fit in right field, where a spot was left vacant when the Giants declined their $4 million option on Jose Cruz Jr. in October. But the Giants aren't calling him the starter yet.
St. Louis Cardinals: The Cardinals brought back two of their relievers, agreeing to a $1.7 million, one-year contract with left-hander Steve Kline and a $900,000, one-year deal with right-hander Cal Eldred.
Tampa Bay Devil Rays:As expected, the Devil Rays did not offer salary arbitration to five of their former players who became free agents, including first baseman Travis Lee, outfielder Ben Grieve and shortstop Rey Ordonez.
Outfielder Al Martin and utility man Terry Shumpert also were not offered arbitration.
The team and Lee both declined the player's mutual option for next season after the first baseman hit .275 with 19 homers and 70 RBIs in 2003. The Devil Rays filled his spot in the lineup last month when they traded for Tino Martinez.
Toronto Blue Jays: Right-hander Kerry Ligtenberg and the Blue Jays agreed Monday to a $4.5 million, two-year contract.
The 32-year-old Ligtenberg went 4-2 with one save and 3.34 ERA in 68 games with the Baltimore Orioles last season. The Orioles declined a $1.2 million option and opted not to offer him salary arbitration.
"We're very pleased," Ligtenberg's agent, Lonnie Cooper said. "Toronto showed a commitment. It's one of the teams that Kerry wanted to play for."
The Blue Jays need a setup man for their inexperienced bullpen. Cooper said they talked about Ligtenberg possibly being the closer.
He has a career mark of 16-14 with 45 saves and a 3.09 ERA in 322 relief appearances with Atlanta and Baltimore.
"Kerry just wants to make a contribution to a team. He's played in different roles before. He's willing to do whatever it takes," Cooper said.
Ligtenberg will make $2 million in 2004 and $2.5 million in 2005.
Van Poppel, 31, was released by Texas last season and signed a minor league deal with Cincinnati.
The deal, agreed to before Sunday's midnight deadline, would give him a $300,000, one-year contract if he is added to the major league roster. The money would be offset against the $3 million he is owed from Texas, which released him last May.
On Monday, the Reds hired former Houston Astros general manager Bill Wood as a special assistant.
Cincinnati also decided not to offer coach Ray Knight another contract. Knight, who managed the Reds in 1996-97, was the bench coach the last two years under Bob Boone.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
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