|Angels acquire Garland; Red Sox bringing back Mike Lowell, Yankees keeping Rivera|
|Written by Admin|
|Monday, 19 November 2007 15:51|
The Red Sox and their popular third baseman reached a preliminary agreement on a three-year, $37.5 million contract, according to two people familiar with the negotiations who spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal had not been finalized.
Rivera told the Yankees he is accepting their $45 million, three-year offer.
Tom Glavine and Greg Maddux, former teammates with Atlanta, also made news on different coasts. Glavine returned to the Braves with an $8 million, one-year contract, and Maddux finalized a $10 million, one-year contract with the San Diego Padres.
``It's hard to describe,'' Glavine said a news conference, flanked by his wife, Christine, new Braves general manager Frank Wren and manager Bobby Cox. ``Obviously we still love it here. This is home for us.''
Second baseman Luis Castillo stayed with the New York Mets, agreeing a $25 million, four-year deal, and catcher Jason LaRue agreed to an $850,000, one-year contract with the St. Louis Cardinals.
The 33-year-old Cabrera batted .301 with eight homers, 86 RBIs and a career-high 101 runs for the AL West champions this season. He also led AL shortstops in fielding percentage (.983) and won his second Gold Glove. The other came in 2001 with the Montreal Expos.
Garland, an 18-game winner in 2005 and 2006, was 10-13 with a 4.23 ERA in 32 starts this year. He joins a solid Angels rotation that includes John Lackey, Kelvim Escobar and Jered Weaver.
``For me it's a great opportunity, growing up in the Southern California area, to come home and show the West what my capabilities are,'' Garland said. ``I'd love to bring a championship back to Southern California and enjoy it back home.''
The deal came 12 days after the White Sox re-signed shortstop Juan Uribe to a $4.5 million, one-year contract. Now, he could wind up on the bench or with another team.
``We saw an opportunity to acquire one of the best shortstops in the game and one of the smartest shortstops in the game. Somebody who can fit into the No. 2 spot in our lineup for 155 games,'' Chicago general manager Ken Williams said, adding the trade frees up money that could help the White Sox pull off another deal.
``We're not done yet. We're still out there trying to land some big fish,'' he said.
In the three weeks since winning their second championship in four seasons, the Red Sox have retained their two biggest free agents, World Series MVP Lowell and pitcher Curt Schilling, and exercised options on Tim Wakefield and Julian Tavarez.
The 33-year-old Lowell, who made $9 million this season, was seeking four guaranteed years and might have gotten it elsewhere. While the sides have reached the outline of the deal, there are still minor issues to be worked out and as of Monday evening there still was not a signed letter of agreement between the team and Lowell's agents.
``How cool is that? Leaving years and dollars on the table to come back here for three more years, good stuff,'' Schilling wrote on his blog, 38pitches.com. ``Congrats to Mike and I've already spoken with a few guys on the team and suffice to say we're all'' ecstatic.
Rivera's agreement is pending a physical. The Yankees also have a preliminary agreement on a $52.4 million, four-year contract with catcher Jorge Posada and are trying to finish off a record-setting $275 million, 10-year deal with Alex Rodriguez, who won his third AL MVP award.
``We've got everybody back,'' Yankees senior vice president Hank Steinbrenner said. ``It's good to have both Jorgie and him back.''
Rivera was coming off a three-year contract that paid him $31.5 million. He had hoped for an extension before the start of this season, but the Yankees decided not to discuss contract extensions with any of their players until after the 2007 season was over.
``Mariano is obviously someone that we can't live without because he's one of a kind and he's so unique in what he does for us,'' Rodriguez said. ``He's such an unbelievable force in our clubhouse. In many ways he's kind of the voice for a lot of people in there.''
New York next hopes Andy Pettitte will decide to pitch for the Yankees again next year. Pettitte turned down a $16 million player option, saying he needed more time to decide whether he wanted to play or retire.
Castillo passed his physical and finalized his deal with the Mets, who acquired him from Minnesota on July 30.
``I'm happy,'' Castillo said. ``I know we have a good team.''
The three-time All-Star batted .296 for New York with 10 stolen bases, 20 RBIs and 37 runs in 50 games. He hit .304 with 18 RBIs and 54 runs in 85 games for the Twins.
A three-time Gold Glove winner, the 32-year-old Castillo also provided solid defense despite playing on a sore right knee that limited his speed.
Castillo had an arthroscopic procedure to clean out his knee after the season and is expected to be 100 percent healthy by early January, according to his agents, Sam and Seth Levinson. They said it was simply scar tissue that caused the discomfort.
``We feel that he should be fine going forward,'' New York general manager Omar Minaya said.
Castillo gets a $1 million signing bonus and salaries of $6 million each of the next four years.
Maddux, who turns 42 on April 14, agreed to the terms of his deal two weeks earlier.
The right-hander has 347 wins, four Cy Young Awards and a World Series championship won in 1995 with the Atlanta Braves.
Maddux's return as San Diego's No. 3 starter appeared likely after he went 14-11 with a 4.14 ERA in his first season with the Padres, who fell one win short of their third straight playoff appearance.