Baseball notebook

Relaxed approach for Youkilis

Infielder unfazed by negotiations

By Adam Kilgore
Globe Staff / December 19, 2008
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Kevin Youkilis addressed several topics pertinent to his offseason yesterday while visiting children from The Guidance Center, Inc. at Lesley University in Cambridge, including his open-ended contract status and potentially being added to the US World Baseball Classic roster.

Joe Bick, Youkilis's agent, said Wednesday he and the Red Sox had entered "early-stage conversations" about a long-term contract for Youkilis. Yesterday, Youkilis confirmed that and gave his mostly indifferent take.

"I leave it up to Joe with all that stuff," Youkilis said. "Both sides come up with offers and try to broker it all out, do all that stuff. They're working on that, and for me, I'm up here in a Boston Red Sox uniform unless I get traded. For me, I don't worry about it. I just know that I have two more years here, unless I get traded.

"It has to be the right fit for myself, and it's got to be the right fit for the Red Sox, too. It works both ways. You try to come up with a mutual understanding where both sides are happy. You definitely don't ask for 10 years or anything crazy like that."

Youkilis has not been contacted about the World Baseball Classic, but he expressed interest in playing for the United States.

"For me, it'd be cool to represent my country," he said. "If they ask me, yeah, definitely, I'll play. Cool experience. I've done a lot of great things, and that could be an added thing to put on the plate."

Heat put on McNamee
Roger Clemens's former personal trainer cooperated with investigators looking into steroids in baseball under threat of prosecution, an assistant US attorney said in a court filing. In a declaration filed in federal court in Houston as part of Clemens's defamation lawsuit against Brian McNamee, assistant US attorney Matthew Parrella said he told McNamee he was not a target of the investigation but could become one if he failed to cooperate. McNamee's lawyers have argued that because he did not volunteer information about Clemens but was "coerced" into giving it under threat of prosecution, he is "immune from any defamation." . . . Dave Smith, a former All-Star closer who holds the Houston Astros' record for pitching appearances, died Wednesday in San Diego. He was 53. Former big leaguer Tim Flannery said Smith apparently died of a heart attack, but the official cause of death wasn't known. Smith was an All-Star with Houston in 1986 and 1990, and had 216 saves in a 13-year career. Obituary, B17 . . . Outfielder Trot Nixon agreed to a minor league contract with the Milwaukee Brewers that includes an invitation to their major league training camp. The 34-year-old Nixon has a .274 career batting average with 137 home runs and 555 RBIs over 12 seasons with the Red Sox, Indians, and Mets . . . Free agent Aaron Boone agreed to a $750,000, one-year contract with the Astros. Boone played for the Washington Nationals last season, hitting .241 with six homers and 28 RBIs.

Material from the Associated Press was used in this report.

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