Cubs avoid arbitration with Pierre, Ohman

CHICAGO -- New center fielder Juan Pierre agreed Thursday to a $5.75 million, one-year contract with the Chicago Cubs, who also settled on a $610,000 deal with left-handed reliever Will Ohman.

Pierre, obtained in a trade with the Florida Marlins in December, made $3.7 million last year. He asked for $6.5 million and the Cubs offered $5 million, making the settlement at the midpoint.

Ohman made $320,000 last season and was looking for a bump to $775,000, while the team countered with an offer of 500,000.

Both players had filed for arbitration. The Cubs have not had a player go to a hearing since Andy MacPhail became their chief executive officer in September 1994.

Pierre batted .276 with 19 doubles, 13 triples and 47 RBI in 162 games for the Marlins last year. He gives the Cubs the leadoff hitter they had been seeking.

Ohman was 2-2 with a 2.91 ERA in 69 appearances last season. He was unscored on in 58 of his appearances and stranded 35 of 47 inherited runners, holding opponents to a .201 batting average.

Right-hander Carlos Zambrano is the lone Cubs player remaining in arbitration.