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In Sports from United Press International

Dec. 13, 2001 at 3:01 PM   |   Comments

The New York Yankees finally finished their long courtship of Jason Giambi Thursday by signing the slugging first baseman to a seven-year contract.

Financial terms were not disclosed, but various published reports claim that Giambi agreed to leave the Oakland Athletics for a deal worth anywhere between $118 million and $120 million.

Giambi was the jewel of this year's crop of free agents and chose the bright lights and big money of the American League's best team. He leaves the fiscally constrained A's and join a team that has participated in five of the last six world series.

Giambi also dons the uniform of the team that has eliminated Oakland from postseason contention in each of the last two seasons.

After weeks of speculation, Giambi was introduced at Yankee Stadium, a facility that seems perfectly suited for the slugger's lefthanded swing. He also factors into the middle of a revamped lineup that now rates among the best in the game.


The Yankees, busiest team in the current baseball meetings, also acquired veteran hitter John Vander Mal from the San Francisco Giants and reportedly have come to terms with left-handed starter Sterling Hitchcock.

In addition to Jason Giambi and Vander Wal, New York also has added third baseman Robin Ventura, setup man Steve Karsay and reportedly reached an agreement with free agent outfielder Rondell White.

To acquire Vander Wal, who can play the outfield or first base, the Yankees sent righthander Jay Witasick to the Giants.

Witasick, who struggled with New York after being acquired June

23, had no role with the team following the signing of Karsay.


Mets add leadoff hitter

Boston, Dec. 12 (UPU) -- The New York Mets continue to address their sagging offense.

Roughly 48 hours after acquiring a No. 3 hitter in Roberto Alomar, the Mets on Thursday signed free agent outfielder and leadoff hitter Roger Cedeno to a four-year contract.

Financial terms were not immediately available.

The speedy Cedeno rejoins the team with which he had his greatest success. The 27-year-old Cedeno was the leadoff hitter for New York in 1999 and sparked the offense with a .313 batting average, 90 runs and 66 stolen bases.

After one year in Houston, Cedeno was sent to the Detroit Tigers nearly a year ago. He hit .293 with 55 stolen bases for the Tigers but was benched down the stretch and opted not to return to Detroit.


Controversial slugger traded to Texas

BOSTON, Dec. 13 (UPI) -- Carl Everett's tumultuous times with the Boston Red Sox are over. He's headed for Texas.

The Red Sox gave up on the talented but volatile outfielder late Wednesday night, trading him to the Texas Rangers for lefthanded starter Darren Oliver.

Everett, 30, has been one of the focal points of the annual winter meetings, which are being held at the Boston Sheraton.

The Red Sox planned to rid themselves of the controversial slugger but knew their options would be limited because of Everett's attitude and salary. He is owed $17 million over the next two yearsf.

"We are not blind. It is well-documented the problems Carl has had in Boston," Rangers General Manager John Hart said. "At the same time, we recognize the opportunity for a new fresh start in Texas."


Ex-Cowboy arrested again on drug charges

DALLAS, Dec. 13 (UPI) -- Former Dallas Cowboys lineman Nate Newton was in jail Thursday after being arrested a second time in less than two months on drug charges.

He was accused of hauling a large amount of marijuana in Texas and Louisiana.

Newton, 39, was out on bail on Louisiana charges when he was arrested for possession of marijuana Wednesday in Ellis County south of Dallas. Two other men were also taken into custody with Newton when at least 175 pounds of the drug was found in a pickup truck.

Newton, who played the Cowboy championship teams of the 90's, was held without bail at the Lew Sterrett Justice Center in Dallas. Louisiana authorities were checking into the latest arrest in Texas because he was free on $100,000 bail from an arrest there last month.

Newton was arrested Nov. 4 near Lafayette, La., after state police said they found 213 pounds of marijuana in the back of a van he was driving.

© 2001 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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