Yankees hopeful of signing closer, catcher to new deals

ORLANDO, Fla. -- The New York Yankees hope to get
Mariano Rivera and Jorge Posada re-signed soon.

"We're trying to get these wrapped up. There's plenty of time
to get it done," Hank Steinbrenner, son of owner George
Steinbrenner, said Tuesday.

Talks appear to have progressed more quickly with Rivera, who
met last week in Tampa with team officials.

Posada has drawn interest from the New York Mets, who aren't
certain they will be able to re-sign catcher Paul Lo Duca.

The New York Daily New cited sources close to Posada saying that the catcher is seeking a four-year deal.

"We will make significant attempts to keep them and they will
have decisions to make and we hope they choose to stay as
Yankees," general manager Brian Cashman said.

On Monday, Andy Pettitte declined his $16 million option with the Yankees, still uncertain whether he wants to pitch next season.

Pettitte had until Wednesday to decide on his option, part of the contract he agreed to last December when he returned to the Yankees after three seasons with his hometown Houston Astros. That deal paid him a $16 million salary this year.

"Obviously, we want Andy to stay with the Yanks and pitch for us in '08. In fact, I'd say I need him to," Cashman said on Monday. "He's an important piece for us. ... We're hopeful that at some point that the marriage of the Pettittes and the Yankees can continue."

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.