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Bautista's one-year deal could pay another $100,000 in bonuses

PITTSBURGH -- Third baseman Jose Bautista and the Pittsburgh
Pirates bypassed arbitration by agreeing Thursday to a $1.8
million, one-year contract.


Bautista's deal leaves the Pirates with three players still
eligible for arbitration: second baseman Freddy Sanchez, outfielder Xavier Nady and left-handed reliever John Grabow.

Bautista's salary represents a substantial raise from the
$397,500 he made last season. The deal includes $100,000 in
available performance bonuses for games played and plate
appearances.

Bautista hit .254 with 15 homers and 63 RBIs while playing in a
career-high 142 games last season.

Bautista, 27, was a 20th-round draft pick by
Pittsburgh in 2000, but was claimed by Baltimore in the Rule 5
draft in December 2003. He wound up playing for four teams in 2004
-- the Baltimore Orioles, Tampa Bay Devil Rays, Kansas City Royals and Pirates -- after the Orioles
designated him for assignment in late May.

Bautista returned to Pittsburgh in a July 2004 trade. He batted
.235 with 16 homers and 51 RBIs in 117 games in 2006, playing the
infield and outfield.