Free agent outfielder Ellis Burks and Cleveland agreed Sunday on a three-year deal worth nearly $21 million, The Associated Press learned, a sign the Indians may go into the future minus Manny Ramirez.
The deal could be announced as early as Monday, two sources close to the negotiations said Sunday, speaking on the condition of anonymity.
Burks hit .344 with 24 home runs and 96 RBIs in only 393 at-bats last season for the San Francisco Giants. The NL West champions, however, did not make a firm, multiyear offer to keep him.
Burks narrowed his choice to the Indians and the Texas Rangers. The Colorado Rockies had made a strong bid, and the New York Yankees dropped out after expressing early interest.
The 36-year-old Burks plays right field, the same position Ramirez held for Cleveland. Ramirez recently sought a $200 million, 10-year contract from the Indians, who countered with a $119 million, seven-year offer to the free agent slugger, a deal that included a large amount deferred without interest.
The Indians then pulled their proposal off the table, an indication they might instead spend their money on a hitter - Burks - and a pitcher, possibly Mike Mussina.
The San Francisco Giants acquired pitcher Tim Worrell from the Chicago Cubs for third baseman Bill Mueller.
The Giants also reached a one-year agreement with third baseman Russ Davis, who batted .261 with nine home runs in 80 games last season.
HORSE RACING: Arch Kingsley rode Timber Bay Farm's Romantic to a 1¬-length victory over Campanile on Sunday in the $100,000 Marion du Pont Scott Colonial Cup Steeplechase run at the Springdale Race Course.
Kingsley brought the 8-year-old gelding home in 5:19.1 over the 2-mile, 17-fence course, well off the 5:07 record time set by Ninepins last year.
All Gong, who won last month's $250,000 Breeders' Cup Grand National Steeplechase, was third. Assurance was fourth after leading the eight-horse field through 15 fences.
The victory was Romantic's first in a Grade I chase this year. It gave Kingsley his second straight Colonial Cup win and his third in a Grade I chase in Camden.
RUNNING: Brian Clas, competing in his first marathon, knew he was so far ahead in Sunday's Philadelphia Marathon he didn't even look over his shoulder.
Clas, from Ithaca, N.Y., took the lead near the eight-mile mark and steadily increased his margin. By the time he reached the last turnaround point at 20 miles, he had an insurmountable lead.
Clas finished in the course-record time of 2 hours, 18 minutes, 3 seconds. Runner-up Andrey Shalagin, a native of Russia now living in Rockville, Md., finished more than five minutes back in 2:23:30.
In the women's race, Elvira Kolpakova of Russia and Kim Saddic of West Chester, Pa. dueled for about 20 miles. Then Kolpakova pulled away and won in 2:41:56. Saddic took second in 2:45:29.
Clas broke the course record of 2:19:03 held by Gavin Gaynor by exactly one minute.
SOCCER: Hundreds of Belgian soccer fans fought with police after their team's loss Sunday. About a dozen fans injured, none seriously, officials said.
The trouble began after FC Antwerp's 2-1 loss to rival Germinal Beerschot. Young fans pelted mounted police with stones and some attacked security forces with metal traffic signs. Police had to use water cannons to restore order.
Fighting had been widely anticipated and police had some 600 officers in and near Bosuil Stadium.
An Italian soccer player reportedly was in a coma Sunday after he was punched by an opponent outside the locker room a half hour after the game.
Francesco Bertolotti, a 33-year-old midfielder for Modena of Serie C, was knocked unconscious by a single uppercut from Como captain Massimiliano Ferrigno, the Italian news agency ANSA said.
Ferrigno, who was Bertolotti's teammate three years ago at Brescello, reportedly fled after the punch, which broke Bertolotti's jaw and sent his head slamming to the marble floor.