<
>

Yankees dangling Cabrera; Igawa deal close

A three-team trade reportedly is in the works that would send outfielder Melky Cabrera from the New York Yankees to the Atlanta Braves.

The deal, an unnamed baseball official told The New York Times, also would send left-handed reliever Mike Gonzalez from the Pittsburgh Pirates to the Yankees, and first baseman Adam LaRoche from the Braves to the Pirates.

The Yankees also were close to completing a five-year, $20 million deal with Japanese pitcher Kei Igawa. The Yankees and Igawa are close to finalizing a deal, ESPN The Magazine's Buster Olney reports, and an agreement likely would be announced early next week.

The Times, citing the baseball official, reported that the Igawa deal was expected to be completed Sunday, pending a physical.

The Yankees won the bid to negotiate with Igawa on Nov. 28 and have 30 days to negotiate a contract. If no deal is struck before the deadline, Igawa can return to pitch in Japan and the Yankees will get back their bid money.

One concern for the Yankees in the three-team scenario is the hard-throwing Gonzalez, who had tendinitis in his left elbow and was placed on the 15-day disabled list in August. The Yankees can afford to part with Cabrera because their outfield is set with Hideki Matsui in left, Johnny Damon in center and Bobby Abreu in right.