MLB notes: Cespedes steps into free agency
By QMI Agency
|Cuba's Yoennis Cespedes runs to third base in a game against Japan during the 2009 World Baseball Classic at Petco Park in San Diego, Calif., March 18, 2009. (JEFF BOTTARI/Getty Images/AFP)
Outfielder Yoenis Cespedes, a star in his native Cuba, is now a free agent.
MLB notified teams Wednesday that Cespedes may sign as a free agent now that he has legal residency in the Dominican Republic. Cespedes established residency Tuesday, his agent said.
It was reported this month that six teams were interested in Cespedes: The Miami Marlins, Baltimore Orioles, Detroit Tigers, Cleveland Indians, Chicago Cubs and Chicago White Sox.
The Marlins may be the front-runners, reportedly prepared to offer a long-term deal.
Cespedes is expected to get a contract greater than the six-year, $30.25-million deal Cuban left-handed pitcher Aroldis Chapman got from the Cincinnati Reds in January 2010.
ANDINO, ORIOLES AGREE
The Baltimore Orioles agreed to a one-year contract with Robert Andino, avoiding arbitration, following a breakout season by the infielder. The contract was worth $1.3 million, according to reports.
Andino, 27, spent much of the 2011 season at second base in place of injured star Brian Roberts and set career highs in games (139), runs (63), hits (120), doubles (22), home runs (five), RBI (36), and stolen bases (13).
He could be the starter at second base when the season opens in April if Roberts has not recovered from concussion symptoms.
The New York Yankees have finalized a one-year contract with outfielder Andruw Jones worth a reported $2 million, plus $1.4 million in incentives ... Closer Jason Motte and the St. Louis Cardinals have agreed on a one-year deal worth a reported $1.95 million ... The Arizona Diamondbacks have signed reliever Brad Ziegler to a one-year contract, reported to be worth $1.795 million ... The Cincinnati Reds have acquired utility infielder Wilson Valdez from the Philadelphia Phillies for left-handed reliever Jeremy Horst.