Source: Braves, Glaus nearing deal

Updated: December 24, 2009, 8:44 AM ET
By Jerry Crasnick | ESPN.com

Free agent corner infielder Troy Glaus and the Atlanta Braves have reached a tentative agreement on a contract, a baseball source told ESPN.com on Wednesday.

Glaus must undergo a physical exam before the deal can be completed. The physical is more than a formality because of his injury history, and is not expected to take place until after Christmas and possibly New Year's, so no announcement is imminent.

Glaus
Glaus

Glaus, 33, is a four-time All-Star with 304 home runs and a .497 career slugging percentage. He is expected to play first base in Atlanta and give the Braves some middle-of-the-order power to complement Chipper Jones and Brian McCann.

FoxSports.com, which was first to report the pending deal, said Glaus will receive a one-year contract with incentives.

Sources said Braves manager Bobby Cox played a significant role in bringing Glaus to Atlanta. Glaus played third base and Cox was the manager on a U.S. touring team that traveled to Japan in 2000, when Glaus was with the Angels, so the two had a previous connection.

Glaus hit 27 homers and drove in 99 runs in 151 games for St. Louis in 2008, but missed most of last season after undergoing shoulder surgery in January. He returned to play 14 games for the Cardinals in September and October.

Glaus recently traveled to Los Angeles to see Dr. Lewis Yocum for an exam, and made his records available to all 30 clubs to show teams that he has returned to full health. Glaus owns a horse farm in New Jersey, and had been lifting weights and working out with no restrictions at big leaguer Jack Cust's facility in Flemington, N.J.

The Braves now have filled two lineup voids in the past two days. They acquired left fielder Melky Cabrera from the Yankees in the Javier Vazquez trade on Tuesday, and Glaus would replace first baseman Adam LaRoche, who filed for free agency in November.

LaRoche reportedly wants a three-year deal, and the Braves regarded him as beyond their price range.

Glaus will be in unfamiliar territory when he moves to first base. He has appeared in 1,336 career games at third base, 18 at shortstop and only six games at first in his major league career. All six appearances at first base came with St. Louis during the 2008 and 2009 seasons.

Jerry Crasnick covers baseball for ESPN.com.

Jerry Crasnick | email

ESPN.com MLB Sr. Writer