Radke gets $18M; Cards re-sign Morris

Updated: December 8, 2004, 3:01 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

Minnesota Twins: Brad Radke stayed with the Minnesota Twins, agreeing Tuesday night to an $18 million, two-year contract.

Notable players not offered arbitration
Player Team
Troy Glaus Angels
Jeff Kent Astros
Jermaine Dye Athletics
Carlos Delgado Blue Jays
J.D. Drew Braves
Russ Ortiz Braves
Moises Alou Cubs
Steve Finley Dodgers
Al Leiter Mets
Eric Milton Phillies
Kevin Millwood Phillies
Jeromy Burnitz Rockies
Magglio Ordonez White Sox

The Twins also offered arbitration to third baseman Corey Koskie, left-hander Terry Mulholland and catcher Henry Blanco. However, Blanco agreed to a two-year deal with the Chicago Cubs.

"I think it turned out for the best for both sides," Radke said. "It feels good. You know, the Twins always said that I was their top priority to sign this year and I feel the same way.

"I feel the Twins were my first priority, and I'm just glad it got done," he said.

Radke formed a dominant duo with Johan Santana at the top of the Twins' rotation last season. He went 11-8 with a 3.48 ERA in 219 2/3 innings.

Teams had until midnight ET to offer their own eligible players binding arbitration.

If a team opts not to offer one of its free agents arbitration, the player is unable to re-sign with the team until May 1.

Players offered arbitration, have until Dec. 19 to accept. Even if players decline to go before a panel that would decide 2005 salaries, teams get to extend their negotiating windows until Jan. 8.

If a player offered arbitration leaves, the team receives a compensatory draft pick tied to the player's level of success over the past two years. That pick is the main reason many small-market clubs will offer the arbitration, knowing full well that a player has no intention of re-signing with the teams.

St. Louis Cardinals: Matt Morris will return, agreeing to a $2.5 million, one-year contract that allows him to earn an additional $4.5 million in performance bonuses.

The NL champions also re-signed two other players, reaching one-year deals with right-hander Cal Eldred ($600,000) and outfielder John Mabry ($725,000).

The Cardinals offered salary arbitration to free-agent shortstop Edgar Renteria and catcher Mike Matheny, but did not make offers to right-hander Woody Williams, left-handed reliever Steve Kline and outfielder Ray Lankford, who was considering retirement.

Atlanta Braves: The club severed its ties to J.D. Drew, deciding not to offer salary arbitration to the outfielder after his breakthrough season.

The Braves lost another key player, as well. Fifteen-game winner Jaret Wright signed a three-year, $21 million deal with the New York Yankees, ESPN.com's Jayson Stark is reporting.

Drew hit .305 with 31 homers, 93 RBI and 12 stolen bases, helping the Braves win their 13th straight division title. For the first time, he made it through the season without going on the disabled list.

But the Georgia native priced himself out of Atlanta's budget with the best season of his career. The Braves plan to keep their payroll around $80 million, the same level as this past season.

Atlanta did offer arbitration to Wright, along with two other players the team hopes to bring back: pitcher Paul Byrd and first baseman Julio Franco.

The Braves declined arbitration for another 15-game winner, Russ Ortiz, their former No. 1 starter who struggled late in the season. Losing Wright and Ortiz could signal a return to the starting rotation for closer John Smoltz, who had 44 saves last season.

The Braves did not offer arbitration to reliever Antonio Alfonseca, who went 6-4 with a 2.57 ERA setting up for Smoltz.

Chicago White Sox: The club cut ties with Magglio Ordonez, declining to offer arbitration to their All-Star right fielder.

The White Sox also did not offer arbitration to shortstop Jose Valentin, second baseman Roberto Alomar, and his brother, catcher Sandy Alomar Jr.

Ordonez is a career .307 hitter with 187 homers and 703 RBI, but the decision was no surprise because the White Sox were never able to evaluate his surgically repaired left knee. Ordonez only played 52 games last season because of the injury, and had a second surgery in September.

Ordonez missed 36 games after injuring his left knee May 19, then went on the disabled list for good on July 22 with bone marrow edema. Ordonez is scheduled to hold a workout at this weekend's winter meetings, but that was too late for the White Sox, who couldn't risk offering him arbitration without more details on his health.

Toronto Blue Jays: Carlos Delgado was not offered salary arbitration, leaving one of the biggest stars in franchise history to look for a new team.

The move was not a surprise for the cost-conscious Blue Jays because Delgado could command one of the richest free-agent contracts of the offseason.

Delgado told The Toronto Sun he already received offers from Texas and Seattle in addition to the Blue Jays.

Now the Blue Jays can't re-sign the first baseman before May 1, and they will not get any compensation if he goes to another club.

Delgado has spent his entire 12-year career with Toronto, batting .282 with 336 home runs, 1,058 RBI and a .392 on-base percentage. The two-time All-Star finished second in AL MVP voting in 2003, then hit .269 with 32 homers and 99 RBI in 128 games last season.

The Blue Jays also declined to offer arbitration to outfielder Dave Berg, left-hander Valerio De Los Santos, shortstop Chris Gomez and right-hander Pat Hentgen, who came off the voluntarily retired list last month. The team did offer arbitration to catcher Gregg Zaun.

Anaheim Angels: The club declined to offer salary arbitration to free-agent third baseman Troy Glaus, cutting ties with the 2002 World Series MVP.

The Angels also did not offer arbitration to pitcher Aaron Sele, first baseman Andres Galarraga and infielder Shane Halter.

A three-time All-Star, the 28-year-old Glaus missed most of last season because of a right shoulder injury that required surgery on May 21. He batted .251 with 18 homers and 42 RBI in 58 games.

Glaus led the AL with 47 homers in 2000, then hit 41 the following year. He has three 100-RBI seasons, but shoulder injuries have slowed him the past two years. He was selected by the Angels with the third overall pick in the 1997 draft.

Florida Marlins: Carl Pavano was offered salary arbitration as the Marlins held out a sliver of hope that their best starter will return in 2005.

The Marlins announced the move moments before the deadline. Pavano, 18-8 with a 3.00 ERA for Florida last season, was in Seattle on Tuesday, continuing his tour of visits with potential suitors. He's already met with Baltimore, Detroit, the Yankees and Red Sox and plans to see Anaheim officials later this week.

It's unknown if Pavano will consider Florida's arbitration offer; his agent, Scott Shapiro, was meeting with Mariners officials late Tuesday night when the team announced its decision.

"I'm not in a position to comment at this time," Shapiro said when asked about the offer.

The fiscally challenged Marlins offered Pavano a $21 million, three-year deal weeks ago, but he's expected to command significantly more on the free agent market. Florida says it has lost more than $38 million over the last two seasons, and its 2005 payroll isn't expected to grow much from this year's $53 million mark.

Oakland Athletics: The club declined to offer arbitration to four free agents, including power-hitting outfielder Jermaine Dye.

The A's also declined arbitration for second baseman Mark McLemore and relievers Jim Mecir and Chris Hammond. Oakland is now unable to negotiate with the four players before May 1, and won't receive compensation if they sign with other teams.

Oakland declined a $14 million option on Dye in October. He batted .265 with 23 homers and 80 RBI last season, hitting just .231 after the All-Star break.

The oft-injured slugger also sprained his left thumb down the stretch and missed several important games for Oakland's playoff hopes. The A's were unwilling to risk a hefty arbitration ruling, particularly after acquiring highly paid catcher Jason Kendall last month from Pittsburgh.

Oakland also declined an option on Hammond in October. He went 4-1 with a team-low 2.68 ERA out of the bullpen, but missed six weeks with a strained left shoulder.

Mecir and McLemore both are contemplating retirement. Oakland's other free agent, catcher Damian Miller, already signed a three-year deal with Milwaukee.

Houston Astros: Carlos Beltran and Roger Clemens, two All-Stars who helped the team win its first playoff series in club history, were offered salary arbitration.

However, second baseman Jeff Kent was not offered arbitration and will not return to the team.

"We felt like we made some very fair offers to Jeff," new Astros general manager Tim Purpura said. "It just didn't work out."

In addition to Kent, relievers Dan Miceli and Darren Oliver were also not offered arbitration.

Free-agent outfielder Orlando Palmeiro agreed to an $800,000, one-year contract and right-handed reliever Russ Springer was signed to a minor league contract.

The negotiations are just starting with Beltran, whose postseason performance -- .417, four homers, five RBI, four steals in the NLCS; .455, four homers, nine RBI in the Division Series -- made him baseball's biggest offseason catch.

"We've accomplished one of the steps," Purpura said. "We know where we stand and we're ready to get started."

Meanwhile, the 42-year-old Clemens, who won his record seventh Cy Young Award a month ago, is again considering retirement.

Los Angeles Dodgers: Adrian Beltre and three other free agents were offered salary arbitration.

Pitchers Odalis Perez and Wilson Alvarez and catcher Brent Mayne also were offered arbitration.

Outfielder Steve Finley, pitcher Jose Lima, catcher Todd Hundley, pitcher Hideo Nomo, second baseman Jose Hernandez and pitcher Paul Shuey were not offered arbitration along with Robin Ventura, who said he is retiring.

Earlier Tuesday, the Dodgers reached a $1.3 million, one-year deal with arbitration-eligible pitcher Elmer Dessens, who went 1-0 with a 3.20 ERA in 19 2/3 innings last season after being acquired from Arizona on Aug. 19. Los Angeles has a $1.3 million option for 2006, but Dessens can void it.

Arizona Diamondbacks: The club offered salary arbitration to first baseman Richie Sexson, trying to make the best of what potentially was their worst deal ever.

The Diamondbacks sent six players, including 2004 National League doubles leader Lyle Overbay, to Milwaukee for Sexson last year. Then the slugger tore the labrum in his left shoulder twice and was done by late May.

Sexson, who received $8.6 million for his 23-game season, filed for free agency last month and has given no indication that he plans to return to a team that lost 111 games and recently bungled the hiring of manager Bob Melvin by first offering the job to Wally Backman.

Diamondbacks general manager Joe Garagiola Jr. did not return phone calls to his office about the team's 10 other free agents: outfielders Danny Bautista and Quinton McCracken; infielders Carlos Baerga and Greg Colbrunn; and relievers Matt Mantei, Mike Fetters, Jeff Fassero, Shane Reynolds, Scott Service and Steve Sparks.

The big names among them were Bautista, a World Series hero for Arizona in 2001, and Mantei, who was acquired in 1999 as the closer of the future. The right-hander had elbow surgery in 2002, played well in 2003 but appeared in only 12 games last year, going 0-3 with an 11.81 ERA and four saves.

San Francisco Giants: The club cut ties with closers Dustin Hermanson and Robb Nen, one week after signing Armando Benitez to a free-agent contract.

The Giants declined to offer salary arbitration to Hermanson, Nen and right-hander Dave Burba before Tuesday night's deadline. The team did offer arbitration to lefty specialist Jason Christiansen.

Nen, 35, has not pitched in more than two years because of an injured shoulder and has not decided whether to try to mount a comeback. If he does, he could sign a minor league contract with the team but not pitch in the majors until May 1.

Nen, who saved 206 games for the Giants from 1998-2002, has made nearly $18 million while spending the past two seasons on the disabled list. He has undergone three shoulder operations since last pitching in the 2002 World Series. He has 314 career saves.

Philadelphia Phillies: Left-handed reliever Rheal Cormier is returning, agreeing to a $5.25 million, two-year contract.

Cormier was 4-5 with a 3.56 ERA last season, his fourth year with the Phillies. He will earn $2.25 million in 2005 and $2.5 million in '06. There's a club option for $3 million in 2007 with a $500,000 buyout.

Cormier's best season was in 2003, when he was 8-0 with a 1.70 ERA in 56 games. The 12-year veteran is 69-59 with a 4.01 ERA and two saves in 556 career games with St. Louis, Boston, Montreal and the Phillies.

The Phillies didn't offer salary arbitration to starters Kevin Millwood and Eric Milton.

The club did, however, offer arbitration to second baseman Placido Polanco, and outfielder Doug Glanville.

Relievers Roberto Hernandez and Todd Jones were not offered arbitration.

Texas Rangers: Outfielder David Dellucci was offered salary arbitration, giving the two sides extra time to negotiate a new contract.

While keeping open the possibility of Dellucci staying, the Rangers didn't offer arbitration to nine other free agents after an improbable pennant chase. That group included utility player Eric Young, right-hander Jeff Nelson and outfielders Brian Jordan and Rusty Greer, a fan favorite who has played just once since June 2002 after a series of different surgeries.

Dellucci wants to stay in Texas with manager Buck Showalter, who he also played for in Arizona, but doesn't want another one-year deal like the Rangers had offered before Tuesday. At least two other teams have talked to Dellucci about a two-year contract.

Of 12 free agents the Rangers had, only right-hander John Wasdin and second baseman Manny Alexander signed before the arbitration deadline. Both agreed to minor league deals last month that include invitations to spring training.

Designated hitter Herbert Perry and right-handed reliever Jay Powell, both Rangers the last three seasons, didn't expect to return. They were both limited by injuries, Perry playing in just 49 games and Powell pitching just 24 innings.

The other free agents were third baseman Andy Fox and Jeff Zimmerman, an All-Star reliever as a rookie in 1999 who had 28 saves in 2001.

San Diego Padres: David Wells was offered salary arbitration, giving the Padres until Jan. 8 to re-sign the 41-year-old left-hander.

"Wells was an important part of our club last season and we felt it was imperative to offer arbitration to extend our negotiation period to ensure that David would be back in a Padre uniform in 2005," GM Kevin Towers said.

The Padres declined to offer arbitration to free agent infielders Rich Aurilia, Robert Fick, Alex Gonzalez and Dave Hansen, as well as right-handers Andy Ashby and Antonio Osuna.

Wells was 12-8, with a 3.73 ERA last season. He earned $1.25 million in base pay and another $4.75 million in incentives by making 31 starts.

Wells wanted to return to the Padres, but he wanted a guaranteed contract instead of one loaded with incentives like the one he signed. The Padres balked at giving Wells guaranteed money because of his age -- he'll turn 42 on May 20 -- and his history of injuries.

Seattle Mariners: The club agreed to a $1.75 million, one-year contract with catcher Dan Wilson, bringing back a fan favorite who represents a link to the team's historic 1995 breakthrough.

The club also offered left-hander Ron Villone salary arbitration, when the two sides were unable to agree to a new contract.

The 35-year-old Wilson hit .251 with two home runs and 33 RBI in 103 games last season, his 11th with the Mariners. He is valued for his leadership and as a tutor to young catcher Miguel Olivo, obtained in a midseason trade.

Wilson, an All-Star in 1996, started 91 games behind the plate, the 11th straight year he's led the Mariners in starts by a catcher. He also led the club with five sacrifice flies and ranked second with eight sacrifice bunts.

Last season, Wilson got his 1,000th hit with Seattle, one of only six players in franchise history to reach that milestone with the Mariners.

Kansas City Royals: Kevin Appier agreed to another comeback attempt and settled with the club on a minor-league contract.

Appier, who turned 37 Monday, made just two starts last season, going 0-1 with a 13.50 ERA in four inning. The right-hander, coming off surgery for a torn elbow tendon, left his April 23 start against Minnesota after one inning, went on the disabled list and didn't pitch again.

If he's added to the Royals' major league roster, he would get a $500,000, one-year contract.

Kansas City declined to offered arbitration to Juan Gonzalez, third baseman Joe Randa, utilityman Desi Relaford and catcher Kelly Stinnett.

As for players on the 40-man roster, the Royals said they plan to offer Jeremy Affeldt a contract by the Dec. 20 deadline. Kansas City has not decided whether to offer a contract to right-hander Miguel Asencio, coming off elbow ligament replacement surgery.

New York Mets: The club signed reliever Mike DeJean to a $1.15 million, one-year contract , but declined to offer salary arbitration to Al Leiter and Richard Hidalgo.

The Mets also cut ties with reliever John Franco, their 44-year-old team captain who had pitched with New York since 1990.

The Mets also declined to offer arbitration to right-hander Ricky Bottalico, retiring infielder Todd Zeile and first baseman Mo Vaughn.

DeJean was acquired July 19 from the Orioles for outfielder Karim Garcia. The right-hander pitched in 17 games for the Mets, going 0-0 with a 1.69 ERA.

Colorado Rockies: The club offered arbitration to pitcher Jamey Wright and catcher Todd Greene, anticipating they'll both return to the team next season.

Wright went 1-2 with a 4.12 earned-run average after being acquired out of Kansas City's minor league system last July. He will compete for a spot in the team's starting rotation next year.

Wright was the team's first-round draft pick in 1993 -- supposed to be one of the cornerstones of the franchise -- and this is his second stint in Colorado.

The Rockies refused to offer arbitration on Jeromy Burnitz, deciding to part ways with their home-run leader from 2004.

In October, the Rockies and Burnitz parted when they agreed not to exercise a $3 million mutual option, and the outfielder received a $250,000 buyout. Burnitz, 35, led the Rockies with 37 home runs last season and was second with 110 RBI.

In addition to Burnitz, the Rockies did not offer arbitration to pitchers Shawn Estes and Steve Reed, infielder Royce Clayton and outfielder Mark Sweeney.

Baltimore Orioles: B.J. Surhoff agreed on a one-year, $1.1 million contract.

Surhoff batted .309 with eight homers and 50 RBI in 100 games in 2004. The free-agent outfielder spent the last two seasons in Baltimore, and was not eager to go elsewhere.

The 40-year-old Surhoff is a .283 career hitter with 183 homers and 1,119 RBI in 18 major league seasons. He was drafted No. 1 overall by the Brewers in 1985.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

ALSO SEE