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Ruben Rivera rejoins Yankees

Feb. 14, 2002 at 3:08 PM

NEW YORK, Feb. 14 (UPI) -- Once a highly touted prospect with

the New York Yankees, outfielder Ruben Rivera returned to the

American League champions after signing a one-year contract on

Thursday.

Financial terms were not disclosed.

Rivera, the cousin of Yankees star closer Mariano Rivera,

displayed plenty of potential coming up through the minor

leagues and made his debut with New York in 1995. He played 46

games with the Yankees in 1996 and was sent to the San Diego

Padres in the trade that brought Japanese righthander Hideki

Irabu to New York.

The 28-year-old Rivera spent 1997-00 with San Diego before

signing with the Cincinnati Reds before last season. He batted

.255 (67-for-263) with 10 homers and 34 RBI in 117 games with

Cincinnati and was placed on waivers after the season. San

Francisco claimed Rivera off waivers, but did not offer him

arbitration.

The 6-3, 208-pound Rivera has a .218 career average with 58 home

runs and 185 RBI in 562 games.

To make room for Rivera on the 40-man roster, the Yankees

designated pitcher Brian Rogers for assignment. The 25-year-old

righthander was 10-9 with a 3.96 ERA in 29 appearances for Class

AA Norwich of the Eastern League in 2001.

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