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In brief: Hall of Fame slugger Ralph Kiner dies at 91

MLB: Ralph Kiner, who slugged his way into the baseball Hall of Fame and enjoyed a half-century career as a popular broadcaster, died Thursday. He was 91.

The Hall said Kiner died at his home in Rancho Mirage, Calif., with his family at his side.

Kiner hit 369 home runs during his 10-year career, mostly with the Pittsburgh Pirates. He made his debut in 1946 and his power quickly became the talk of baseball – he won or tied for the National League lead in homers in each of his first seven seasons.

“Kiner’s Korner” was already a fixture on the New York Mets’ airways when he was inducted into the Hall in 1975.

The six-time All-Star still ranks sixth all-time with a home run every 14.1 at-bats. He averaged more than 100 RBIs per season and hit .279 with the Pirates, the Chicago Cubs and Cleveland.

Associated Press

Source: Rodney, M’s agree to deal

MLB: A person familiar with the negotiations said that reliever Fernando Rodney and the Seattle Mariners agreed to a $14 million, two-year contract. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the agreement was subject to a physical. The deal, first reported by ESPN, also includes performance bonuses.

Rodney appeared in 68 games last season for Tampa Bay with 37 saves. He saved 85 games in two seasons for the Rays.

Associated Press

Pirates retain Tully as assistant

College football: New Whitworth football coach Rod Sandberg turned to an old assistant to fill the last full-time coaching position on his staff.

Sandberg hired Jay Tully, son of former coach John Tully, to keep his job as defensive backs coach. He will also add the new responsibility of strength and conditioning coach, according to a university news release.

Tully has coached with Whitworth since 2008 after playing safety for the Pirates from 2004-07.

“Jay is first and foremost an exceptional teacher,” Sandberg said. “I know as a position coach he will have our defensive backs prepared and confident.”

Thomas Clouse