Tagged The Seattle Seahawks will use their franchise tag to retain control of kicker Olindo Mare. Mare, 36, will receive a tender for the average salary of the top five kickers in the NFL – $2.8 million – or a 20 percent salary increase. He made 24 of 26 kicks last season to rank third in the league.
Signed Former Indian Russell Branyan is headed back to Cleveland. The two sides reached a preliminary agreement last week on a one-year, $2 million contract. Branyan set career highs with 31 home runs and 76 RBIs for Seattle last season, but didn’t play after Aug. 28 because of a herniated disk in his back. The Indians gave him a thorough physical before finalizing the deal.
•The New York Mets and veteran catcher Rod Barajas finalized a $500,000, one-year contract. Barajas batted just .226 with the Toronto Blue Jays last year, but he had 19 homers and a career-high 71 RBIs. The addition of the 34-year-old Barajas gives the Mets six catchers in camp who played in the majors last year, with no clear starter.
•The New England Patriots have re-signed veteran wide receiver David Patten, a key contributor in the early part of the last decade when the team won three Super Bowls. Patten played in 54 regular- season and six playoff games with the Pats from 2001-2004. He caught a TD pass from Tom Brady in the 20-17 upset of the St. Louis Rams in the 2002 Super Bowl.
Announced Duke legend Christian Laettner joined UCLA star Sidney Wicks, West Virginia sharpshooter Jerry West and high-flying North Carolina State All-American David Thompson among the eight members of the National Collegiate Basketball Hall of Fame’s 2010 class. Triangle offense innovator Tex Winter, Alcorn State coach Davey Whitney, NCAA executive vice president Tom Jernstedt and former Big Eight and Big Ten commissioner Wayne Duke also will be inducted on Nov. 21 in Kansas City.