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Doumit, Pirates close to 3-year deal

Doumit, Pirates close to 3-year deal
The Pirates and catcher Ryan Doumit have agreed to the framework of a three-year contract that includes two club option years that will buy out his first two years of free agency.

The deal won't be finalized until Doumit completes a physical. He is expected to be in Pittsburgh to take the physical today.

"We do not have a deal yet," Pirates president Frank Coonelly said Sunday night. "We hope to have one done soon."

Calls to Doumit and his agent, Paul Cobbe, were not returned last night.

The Pirates control Doumit's rights for the next three seasons, but the new deal will eliminate all of his salary-arbitration years. It also gives the team some financial certainty over Doumit's salary as it relates to future payrolls. He earned $412,000 last season.

A switch-hitter whose career had been slowed by injuries, Doumit emerged as the Pirates starting catcher last year, unseating since-departed Ronny Paulino. In a career-high 116 games, Doumit batted .318 with 15 home runs and 69 RBI.

His batting average would have ranked fourth in the National League, but Doumit fell 37 plate appearances shy of qualifying for the batting title. Doumit led the major leagues ? and ranked third in the majors ? by batting .407 with runners in scoring position.

In 335 career games, Doumit has a .278 average, 36 homers and 153 RBI.

The Pirates still have long-term contract offers on the table for All-Star outfielder Nate McLouth and left-handed starter Paul Maholm.

Doumit, 27, was the Pirates' second-round pick in the 1999 draft.

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:
Added: December 23, 2008

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