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Cabrera joins Angels

Shortstop receives 4-year, $32m deal

Orlando Cabrera helped the Red Sox win their first World Series title since 1918, but his stay in Boston turned out to be brief.

Cabrera agreed yesterday to a $32 million, four-year contract with the Anaheim Angels, who made room by cutting shortstop David Eckstein.

Cabrera, a 2001 Gold Glove winner, was traded from the Montreal Expos to the Red Sox in late July. He replaced Nomar Garciaparra at shortstop and helped the Red Sox win their first World Series title since 1918.

The 30-year-old Cabrera hit .264 with 10 homers and 62 RBIs combined for the Expos and Red Sox. He batted .288 with 11 RBIs in the postseason and didn't commit an error in 14 games, then became a free agent. He was replaced in Boston by Edgar Renteria, who agreed last week to a $40 million, four-year contract with the Red Sox.

Cabrera's deal calls for a $4 million signing bonus payable over four years.

Calling on Beltran
The Yankees were moving ahead in pursuit of the biggest name on the free agent market. New York owner George Steinbrenner is scheduled to meet with center fielder Carlos Beltran today. The big three-way trade that would send Randy Johnson from Arizona to the Yankees could be sent to commissioner Bud Selig for approval today. The deal also involves Los Angeles . . . Right fielder Jacque Jones agreed to a $5 million, one-year contract with the Minnesota Twins that avoided salary arbitration. The Twins also agreed to one-year deals with second baseman Luis Rivas ($1,625,000), designated hitter Matthew LeCroy ($750,000), outfielder Michael Ryan (next year's minimum plus $5,000) and righthander Matt Guerrier (minimum plus $2,500). Minnesota offered contracts to its four other arbitration-eligible players: lefthanders Johan Santana and J.C. Romero and righthanders Kyle Lohse and Carlos Silva, guaranteeing the Twins will begin 2005 with the same rotation it finished with last season . . . On a busy day of deals among players eligible for salary arbitration, Toronto righthander Justin Speier got a $4.15 million, two-year agreement. Others who agreed to one-year contracts included Cleveland second baseman Ronnie Belliard ($3 million); Baltimore outfielder Jay Gibbons ($2.6 million); Oakland righthander Chad Bradford ($1.4 million) and second baseman Mark Ellis; and Detroit outfielder Alex Sanchez and Brandon Inge ($1.35 million each) . . . Among players who were already free agents, two lefthanded relievers agreed to two-year contracts, with Steve Kline getting $5.5 million from Baltimore and Kent Mercker $2.6 million from Cincinnati . . . Among the notable players not to be tendered an offer, making them free agents today, was the Astros' Wade Miller. The righthander missed the second half of 2004 because of a rotator cuff injury . . . Mets center fielder Mike Cameron will miss the start of the season and possibly all of April following surgery to repair damaged cartilage in his left wrist.

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