Branyan, Tribe come to terms
ESPN.com is reporting that Russell Branyan has accepted the Indians’ offer of a one-year contract with a $2 million base and up to $1 million more in incentives. The contract reportedly includes a mutual option for 2011 worth $5 million.
The Indians have not yet confirmed this report.
The left-handed-hitting Branyan would likely share time at first base with Matt LaPorta, who is recovering from offseason hip and toe surgeries. He could also help out at third base and in the corner outfield, and he’d provide an insurance policy should Travis Hafner’s surgically repaired right shoulder continue to give him trouble.
I’ll let you know more as I hear it.
UPDATE: The Indians still have not confirmed this agreement, and it’s doubtful they would until a physical examination is passed. As you probably know, Branyan had a bad back that prevented him from playing the last month of the ’09 season in Seattle. And concerns about the back made it difficult for him to land the multiyear deal he was looking for this winter.
The physical would be conducted at the Tribe’s Goodyear, Ariz., complex. Branyan, I’m told, is not there today.