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Ramírez rejects Dodgers

Associated Press / February 27, 2009
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Manny Ramírez has rejected yet another offer from the Los Angeles Dodgers.

The Dodgers announced last night the star outfielder's agent, Scott Boras, had declined a $25 million, one-year contract with a $20 million player option for 2010, the club's fourth offer this offseason.

Boras did not immediately return a phone message.

"We want Manny back, but we feel we are negotiating against ourselves," Dodgers owner Frank McCourt said in a statement. "When his agent finds those 'serious offers' from other clubs, we'll be happy to restart the negotiations . . . So now we start from scratch."

General manager Ned Colletti said there was not necessarily a hard deadline, and that Ramírez was not yet needed in spring training. "With the season starting a week later, it's a little bit more flexible than it might have been a year ago," Colletti said.

A-Rod's cousin unwelcome
Alex Rodriguez was told by the New York Yankees to keep his cousin away from the team. The message was given to the star third baseman yesterday, said a person familiar with the situation, speaking on condition of anonymity because the team did not make an announcement. Rodriguez also was told the cousin should not be anywhere the team congregates.

At Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, general manager Brian Cashman said the matter of Rodriguez being picked up from his spring training opener Wednesday by his cousin "has been handled."

Rodriguez took a similar tone. "It's been addressed," he said. "No further comment."

A day earlier in Dunedin, Fla., Rodriguez homered and walked twice, then got into an SUV driven by Yuri Sucart. He's been identified as the cousin who provided Rodriguez with performance-enhancing drugs.

Nationals fire Rijo
Jose Rijo, a special assistant to Nationals GM Jim Bowden, was fired, the latest casualty from a scandal involving a top prospect from the Dominican Republic who lied about his age and name . . . Mets ace Johan Santana was scratched from this morning's "B" game start against Italy because of tenderness in his pitching elbow . . . National League Cy Young Award winner Tim Lincecum agreed to a $650,000, one-year contract with the Giants . . . Milton Bradley's spring training debut with the Cubs was cut short by left quadriceps tightness after he drew a walk in the first inning of a 7-4 win over the Brewers.

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