Olerud likely to land on feet in Bronx

Updated: August 3, 2004, 2:19 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

The New York Yankees are reportedly on the verge of adding another former All-Star to their talent-laden roster.

John Olerud
First Base
Seattle Mariners
Profile
2004 SEASON STATISTICS
GM HR RBI R SB AVG
78 5 22 29 0 .245

The New York Post and New York Times reported Monday night that former Mariners first baseman John Olerud was close to finalizing a deal to join the Bronx Bombers.

The Post reported that the Yankees were planning a Tuesday afternoon news conference.

The addition of Olerud, a two-time All-Star and a three-time Gold Glove winner, would bring the number of former All-Stars on the Yankees' roster to 19.

Olerud would provide depth at first base for the Yankees, who are without Jason Giambi, on the disabled list while recovering from a benign tumor. Miguel Cairo has been the Yankees' backup first baseman with Giambi out.

Giambi is expected to return before the end of the season, but his timetable is uncertain.

"[Olerud] is going to get a chance to play," manager Joe Torre said.

Once Olerud is ready, he will start and Tony Clark will assume the backup role, Torre said.

Olerud was hitting .245 with five homers and 22 RBI in 77 games when he was released July 23 by the Mariners. He was in the final year of his contract, earning $7.7 million this season.

The 35-year-old Olerud hit an AL-leading .363 with Toronto in 1993, when the Blue Jays won their second straight World Series title. He has a career average of .295.

Olerud has 2,143 hits, 244 homers and 1,167 RBI in his career. He spent five seasons with the Mariners, helping them win a major league record-tying 116 games in 2001 and reach the AL championship series in 2000 and '01.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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