Jeter's Deal Could Be Final Soon


Friday, February 9th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6


NEW YORK (AP) — It's a good thing Derek Jeter runs faster than his contract negotiations.

The All-Star shortstop's $189 million, 10-year contract with the New York Yankees could be finalized by Monday.

The sides have only minor details left and are close to finishing the deal, a pair of baseball officials said Thursday on the condition they not be identified. Yankees owner George Steinbrenner still had not given his permission to complete the deal, one of the officials said, but it was possible that could come as soon as Friday.

Jeter's agent, Casey Close, spoke again Thursday with Yankees president Randy Levine and was due to talk with him some more on Friday, one of the officials said. The sides agreed last week to the total value of the deal and the payment schedule for the first seven years of the contract.

Last year, Levine and Close agreed to a $118.5 million, seven-year contract, but Steinbrenner wouldn't finalize it because he didn't want to set any salary records. Jeter then signed a $10 million, one-year contract.

Since then, Jeter was chosen MVP of the All-Star game and the World Series, and Alex Rodriguez signed a record $252 million, 10-year deal with Texas.

While Jeter, 26, is eligible for free agency after this season, he has no desire to follow Rodriguez's example and test his value on the market.

``I've said it before: I want to be a Yankee for life. I've been very vocal about that for the last few years,'' he said Monday.

Yankees closer Mariano Rivera, originally scheduled for a hearing Thursday, will have his case rescheduled for Feb. 14 or 19 following the firing of his agents, Jim Bronner and Bob Gilhooley, by SFX Entertainment Inc. Randy Hendricks will take over arguing Rivera's case.

Rivera is asking for a raise from $7.25 million to $10.25 million, and Bronner turned down a $27 million, three-year deal. The Yankees offered $9 million in arbitration.