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Angels Open To In-Season Talks For K-Rod

Angels owner Arte Moreno said today that the team is flexible and is willing to negotiate a contract extension with closer Francisco Rodriguez during the season.  K-Rod and his agent were strongly leaning toward putting talks off until after the season after an agreement could not be reached by Opening Day.

Twins closer Joe Nathan inked a four-year, $47MM deal in March.  The total is the highest ever for a reliever, though Mariano Rivera earns $15MM annually on a three-year pact.  Another comparable is Francisco Cordero's four-year, $46MM deal.  Nathan and Cordero both have fifth-year club options.

Assuming they hit the open market, the big name closers for the winter of 2008-09 are K-Rod and Brad Lidge.  Will one top the $50MM mark or get five guaranteed years?  Brian Fuentes and Brandon Lyon seem to fit into the second tier of free agent closers.


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