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BASEBALL DAILY REPORT : Vaughn Breaks Off Talks With Red Sox

February 15, 1996|Associated Press

Mo Vaughn, the American League's Most Valuable Player, broke off talks with the Boston Red Sox on a long-term contract.

Vaughn was quoted as saying the deal was "95% done," but Tom Reich, one of his two agents, said no further discussions were scheduled.

Boston had expressed interest Monday in one of Vaughn's proposals for a multiyear deal.

"By Tuesday afternoon, the forward progress had deteriorated quickly," Reich said. "The previous day's progress had disappeared. They made a proposal Wednesday that was rejected out of hand."

Red Sox General Manager Dan Duquette was en route to Fort Myers and could not be reached for comment Wednesday. Assistant general manager Mike Port did not return a phone call.

Vaughn, who can't become a free agent until after the 1997 season, had said the monetary aspects of the contract were settled, according to Wednesday's Boston Globe. The newspaper said all that remained was to agree on bonuses and whether the deal would run four or five years.

Vaughn has an arbitration hearing set for next Monday. An agreement before then would make the hearing unnecessary.

The first baseman has asked for $6.1 million for 1996 in arbitration, while the Red Sox filed for $4.2 million.

"We have very serious differences of valuation for Mo Vaughn," Reich said. "Unless and until they are willing to value him in that way, he will continue on a year-to-year basis with all his rights intact."

The Globe report estimated that the deal, before bonuses, probably would be worth about $24 million for four years through the 1999 season.

But Reich, who represents Vaughn along with Mark Gillam, said all Vaughn's offers have been withdrawn and that Vaughn's side doesn't plan further talks although it would respond to Red Sox proposals.

Reich also said Vaughn was considering holding a news conference Saturday in Fort Myers.

"Mo understands the hardball business nature of this game and is preparing himself physically and mentally for an even better season," Reich said.

Vaughn, who has been in Fort Myers since Feb. 2, had indicated Wednesday morning that negotiations were going well.

Vaughn, a .285 career hitter, batted .300 with 39 homers and 126 runs batted in last year in his fifth major-league season. But he was 0 for 14 in the playoffs when Cleveland swept Boston in three games.

*

Mark Lewis, scheduled to be the Detroit Tigers' second baseman, will make $670,000 this season after winning his arbitration case.

The Tigers had offered $450,000 to Lewis, who hit .339 with three homers and 30 RBIs in 81 games for the Cincinnati Reds last season.

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