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Old 06-01-2006, 06:56 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Escobar gets new contract

After 2 years of renting in Southern California, Kelvim Escobar said he finally feels comfortable enough to buy.

A three-year, $28.5 million extension, like the one Escobar signed with the Angels on Wednesday, can do wonders.

The Angels took the unusual step - by their standards - and re-signed a player during the season. The Angels made the first move by calling Escobar's agent this week and said they would only strike a midseason deal if negotiations moved quickly. It took a brisk 36 hours.

"It was done really quickly and that's the way both parties wanted it," Angels general manager Bill Stoneman said. "It keeps the public out of it and keeps the rest of the players focused on baseball instead of reading about contracts and stuff in the papers. It keeps their focus where it ought to be, and that's on the field playing baseball."

The Angels tried to get a deal done this spring, but with Escobar coming off shoulder problems last season, the team only was willing to make a two-year offer for $15 million. Instead of making a counteroffer in years or dollars, Escobar said he wanted to go out and prove his worth.

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