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Indians Trade Williams To Arizona

TUESDAY, DEC. 2, 1997

Matt Williams was traded by the Cleveland Indians to the expansion Arizona Diamondbacks Monday for Travis Fryman and left-hander Tom Martin.

As part of the trade, Williams agreed to a $45 million, five-year contract extension with the Diamondbacks and the Indians will receive cash from Arizona.

“We did not want to go into the ‘98 season with lame-duck player who didn’t want to be with us,” Indians general manager John Hart said. “The opportunity to bring in a younger version of Matt Williams and help ourselves with a relief pitcher was the right move to make.”

Williams, 32, batted .263 last season, his first with the Indians, with 32 homers and 105 RBIs.

A third baseman, Fryman, 28, was acquired by Arizona from the Detroit Tigers on Nov. 18 in a trade the night of the expansion draft. He hit .274 last season with 22 homers and 102 RBIs, topping 20 homers and 100 RBIs for the second straight season.

Martin, 27, was 5-3 with a 2.09 ERA for Houston last season. He was selected by the Diamondbacks with their first pick of the second round of the expansion draft.

Williams was entering the final year of a contract that would have made him Cleveland’s highest-paid player in 1998. After failing to sign Williams to a contract extension, the Indians tried to trade him to Arizona on the day of the expansion draft but the deal fell through.

Time is now for Anderson

Saying he hopes to remain in Baltimore, free agent outfielder Brady Anderson expects to talk with Orioles owner Peter Angelos before Sunday’s salary arbitration deadline.

“It’s my assumption that the Orioles would want to take care of it before the arbitration date,” Anderson said from San Diego, where he is vacationing. “That’s always been the deadline in my mind. I don’t want it to go much longer than that. I really don’t think they would want to handle it through arbitration. I don’t think we do, either.”

The Orioles have offered Anderson $25 million over four years, while the center fielder is seeking a four-year contract deal worth $7 million a year. However, he has said he is willing to accept somewhere in the range of $6 million a year for a contract of five or more years with the Orioles.

“I’ve thought about going to arbitration every now and then,” Anderson said. “My agents told me a long time ago the way to make the most money is to be a really good player and sign one-year contracts your whole career. But it’s not a very pretty process.

“Actually, it’s the biggest risk there is. I guess it’s an option. But it’s not very appealing for either side.”

Young lands two-year deal

The Pittsburgh Pirates signed infielder Kevin Young to a $3.6 million, two-year contract, only 18 months after releasing him.

Young, who made $400,000 last season, got a $100,000 signing bonus and will make $1.5 million in 1998 and $2 million in 1999. He has no performance bonuses, but would make $100,000 for winning the N.L. Most Valuable Player award, with various amounts for other awards.

Young played for Kansas City in 1996 after being cut by the Pirates, then returned to Pittsburgh last season to bat .300 with 18 home runs and 74 RBIs despite missing six weeks with a thumb injury.

The Kansas City Royals claimed shortstop Orlando Miller off waivers from the Detroit Tigers, the team said.

Miller, 28, hit .234 with two home runs and 10 runs batted in in 50 games with the Tigers last season.

Konerko top minor leaguer

Los Angeles Dodgers infielder Paul Konerko was awarded the J.G. Taylor Spink Award as the top player in minor league baseball by Topps Co. and the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues.

Konerko, 21, batted .323 with 37 home runs and 127 runs batted in for the Dodgers’ Triple-A Albuquerque affiliate this past season.

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