Pirates Sign LaRoche, Duke, Grabow, Yates

1:21pm: Kovacevic says the Bucs also avoided arb with Zach Duke ($2.2MM plus $100K in incentives), John Grabow ($2.3MM plus $75K in incentives), and Tyler Yates ($1.3MM plus $25K in incentives).

9:28am: According to ESPN’s Jayson Stark, the Pirates avoided arbitration with first baseman Adam LaRoche by signing him for $7.05MM for ’09.  He can make another $100K based on plate appearances.  Dejan Kovacevic reports the same.

LaRoche will be eligible for free agency after the season.  2009 would be a fine time to overcome his April/May inadequacies.

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