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DODGERS REPORT

Malone to Meet With Park's Agent

April 14, 1999|JASON REID

In an attempt to sign Chan Ho Park to a multiyear contract extension, Dodger officials will meet with the pitcher's agent after the team returns from its seven-game trip.

Dodger General Manager Kevin Malone, the organization's point man in negotiations involving all major player contracts, declined comment on his upcoming conversations with Steve Kim, Park's agent.

Likewise, Kim would not discuss details of future meetings about Park, who is in the final year of his contract, but won't be eligible for free agency until after the 2001 season. Kim acknowledged he is hopeful a deal will be reached soon.

"I don't want to get into everything, but, yes, we're going to talk about it [Park's contract situation] in the next couple of weeks," Kim said. "We would like to get something done before the end of the season, that would be good for Chan Ho.

"We're still talking to the Dodgers to see if we can work something out, but I don't know if we can. If it doesn't pan out in the next couple of weeks, if we don't feel like we're close [on contract terms], then we'll just wait until the end of the year."

Kim declined to discuss the package he and Park, who will be eligible for arbitration at the end of the season, are seeking, but sources familiar with their thinking said they want a four- or six-year deal that averages in excess of $10 million annually. That would establish a new standard for pitchers with less than five years major league service time.

"That's in the ballpark," Kim said. "But I don't know what the Dodgers and Fox are thinking."

Park, who will have four-plus years service time after this season, is making $2.3 million in the final year of a two-year, $3-million contract. Joey Hamilton of the Toronto Blue Jays is the game's highest-paid pitcher with less than five years service time, signing a three-year, $17-million deal in December.

Park is 0-1 with a 5.25 earned-run average and is coming off a poor outing in a 12-6 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks on Monday. He went 15-9 with a 3.71 ERA in 34 starts last season, leading the club in victories, starts, innings pitched and strikeouts in only his second full season in the rotation. That followed Park's breakthrough season in 1997: 14-8, 3.38 ERA.

Right fielder Raul Mondesi set the benchmark for Dodger players with less than five years service time, signing a four-year, $36-million contract that could become a six-year, $60-million deal if the club exercises two option years. Park, who turns 26 in June, rejected the Dodgers' four-year, $20-million offer in October, and then Kevin Brown signed a seven-year, $105-million contract with the Dodgers in December.

*

Teams are beginning to express slightly more interest in acquiring right-hander Dave Mlicki, industry sources said.

Mlicki likely won't get much work as a long reliever, unless the Dodgers are routed often, but his presence provides a valuable insurance policy in case a member of the five-man rotation is injured. Mlicki is making $2.25 million in the final year of his contract.

*

Antonio Osuna, on the 15-day disabled list while recovering from off-season surgery on his throwing elbow, pitched one inning in his second rehabilitation start Tuesday for the Class-A San Bernardino Stampede. Osuna struck out one and walked one while throwing 23 pitches, including 15 strikes. . . . Reserve outfielder Todd Hollandsworth, recovering from hamstring problems, believes he will be ready to be activated this weekend.

TONIGHT

DODGERS' CARLOS PEREZ (0-1, 5.14 ERA)

vs.

ARIZONA'S OMAR DAAL (0-0, 0.00 ERA)

At Bank One Ballpark, 7 p.m., PDT

TV--None. Radio--AM 1150, KWKW (1330)

* Update--Perez gave up four runs in seven innings during a 4-2 loss to the Colorado Rockies last Thursday. He faced the minimum through six innings but the Rockies scored four runs in the seventh. Daal had a no-decision in his first start, pitching 6 1/3 scoreless innings Friday against Atlanta.

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