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Yankees, Beltran finalize 3-year, $45 million deal

The SportsXchange

The New York Yankees officially announced the signing of eight-time All-Star and three-time Gold Glove outfielder Carlos Beltran to a three-year contract Thursday.

Beltran initially reached agreement on a three-year, $45 million contract with the Yankees on Dec. 6, according to multiple reports.

In 2013, the 36-year-old Beltran batted .296 (164-for-554) with 79 runs, 30 doubles, 24 home runs and 84 RBIs in 145 games with the St. Louis Cardinals. In 17 postseason games, including his first career trip to the World Series, he hit .268 (15-for-56) with three doubles, two home runs and 15 RBIs, most among 2013 playoff participants.

Beltran is expected to split time between right field and designated hitter next season. The Yankees' returning outfielders include Brett Gardner, Ichiro Suzuki and Alfonso Soriano, and center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury signed a seven-year, $153 million deal earlier this month.

Free-agent outfielder Shin-Soo Choo had turned down a seven-year, $140 million offer from the Yankees after the signing of Ellsbury, according to reports.

When Choo's agent, Scott Boras, asked for a deal in the price range of Ellsbury's contract, the Yankees declined and moved on to get Beltran instead, according to Yahoo! Sports.

The Yankees' offer to Choo apparently was made between Dec. 3-6 after second baseman Robinson Cano left for the Seattle Mariners and Ellsbury's signing. Boras countered by demanding a contract similar to Ellsbury's deal. The Yankees then agreed to a deal with Beltran.

Beltran owns a .283 career batting average with 1,346 runs, 446 doubles, 358 home runs, 1,327 RBIs and 308 stolen bases in 2,064 games over 16 major league seasons with Kansas City (1998-2004), Houston (2004), New York Mets (2005-11), San Francisco (2011) and St. Louis (2012-13).

Beltran ranks fourth among active players in career runs scored, trailing only Alex Rodriguez (1,919), Derek Jeter (1,876) and Albert Pujols (1,425).

Beltran is the only player in major league history to record at least four consecutive seasons with at least 100 runs scored, 20 home runs, 100 RBIs and 30 stolen bases, a feat he accomplished each season from 2001-04.

Among active switch-hitters, the two-time Silver Slugger Award winner ranks first in runs scored, hits and RBIs and second in doubles and home runs. Beltran is the only switch-hitter with at least 300 home runs and 300 stolen bases in his career.

Beltran is a .333 hitter with 45 runs, 13 doubles, 16 home runs and 40 RBIs in 51 career playoff games. Among active players, he ranks fourth in postseason home runs, sixth in hits and seventh in RBIs.

A native of Manati, Puerto Rico, Beltran was originally selected by Kansas City in the second round of the 1995 First-Year Player Draft. He won the American League Rookie of the Year Award with the Royals in 1999.

In a corresponding 40-man roster move by the Yankees, right-handed pitcher Brett Marshall was designated for assignment.

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