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GONZALEZ MAY BAG RECORD PACT

While baseball wondered whether Juan Gonzalez would get a record-setting deal, some older players found new teams and four in arbitration settled on new contracts.

Talk of a possible $140 million, eight-year contract between Detroit and its new outfielder buzzed through team offices. But there was no indication a deal was done or even close.

However, the sides said they are talking.

If Gonzalez does get a $140 million, eight-year deal, the average salary of $17.5 million would break the current mark of $15 million, set on Dec. 12, 1998, when Kevin Brown and the Los Angeles Dodgers agreed to a $105 million, seven-year contract.

Meanwhile, some veterans out on the market agreed to minor-league contracts: Bobby Bonilla with Atlanta, Danny Tartabull with San Diego and Mark Wohlers with Cincinnati.

Also Friday, pitcher Pat Rapp agreed to a one-year contract with the Baltimore Orioles.

Settling their arbitration cases were Arizona left-hander Brian Anderson ($11 million for three years), Atlanta outfielder Andruw Jones ($3.7 million for one year), Yankees reliever Ramiro Mendoza ($1.4 million for one year) and Boston right-hander John Wasdin ($1.6 million for two years).

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