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Baseball briefs

ANGELS' MOVES: The Los Angeles Angels declined their option on reliever Jason Christiansen.

The team passed up Christiansen's $1,525,000 option and will pay a $125,000 buyout. The 36-year-old left-hander was 0-0 with a 2.45 ERA in 12 games with the Angels, who obtained him from San Francisco on Aug. 30. He went 6-1 with a 5.36 ERA in 56 games with the Giants.

Christiansen pitched only 3 2/3 innings for the Angels and allowed one run.

DEVIL RAYS ' MOVES: The Tampa Bay Devil Rays picked up one-year options on closer Danys Baez and shortstop Julio Lugo.

Coming off a career-high 41 saves last season, Baez will make $4 million next year. The team could have given him a $1 million buyout.

Lugo's deal called for a $4.95 million salary or a $100,000 buyout.

YANKEE BRASS IN FLORIDA: Yankee executives in Tampa will fly to New York for organizational meetings, a change from recent years when general manager Brian Cashman and his staff usually headed to the Florida training complex for strategy sessions.

Team officials Mark Newman, Damon Oppenheimer, Billy Connors, Rob Thomson and Jim Benedict will attend the sessions. They headed to New York on Monday with general partner Steve Swindal and most likely will be joined by owner George Steinbrenner and team president Randy Levine.

Cashman, who agreed last week to a three-year contract, and manager Joe Torre said the New York and Tampa officials needed to communicate better.

WHITE SOX MOVES: The Chicago White Sox barely finished celebrating this World Series title before starting to retool for another run next year.

Frank Thomas exercised his $10 million option Monday, giving the team five days to decide whether to keep the best slugger in White Sox history or buy out the oft-injured designated hitter for $3.5 million.

Chicago also exercised its $1.2 million option on right-handed reliever Cliff Politte and declined an option on DH Carl Everett, giving him a $500,000 buyout.

Neither general manager Ken Williams nor assistant general manager Rick Hahn were available for comment.

HOFFMAN COUNTEROFFERS: Trevor Hoffman's agent made a counteroffer on Tuesday to the Padres but wasn't optimistic that the closer would remain in San Diego.

"Trevor's first choice has always been to remain a Padre. But it's looking more and more like it won't happen," agent Rick Thurman said. "Put it this way — their offer made Trevor upset enough to have his locker cleaned out at the stadium."

The Padres last week offered Hoffman $10 million over two years. Thurman is seeking between $25 million and $27 million over three years.

MARLINS' MOVES: The Florida Marlins declined their option on right-handed reliever Antonio Alfonseca.

The Marlins would have had to pay Alfonseca $2.75 million if they picked up the option for 2006.

Injuries limited the 33-year-old Alfonseca to 27 1/3 innings over 33 appearances this past season for the Marlins. He was 1-1 with a 4.94 ERA and two blown saves, plus yielded 29 hits and 14 walks.

Alfonseca made $316,000 last season, agreeing to an incentive-heavy contract with the Marlins last winter. He pitched for the Marlins from 1997 to 2001, and rejoined the team after appearing in a career-high 79 games with a career-best 2.57 ERA for Atlanta in 2004.

PIRATES HIRE COACHES: Pitching coach Jim Colborn and bench coach Jim Lett are following former Los Angeles Dodgers manager Jim Tracy to the Pittsburgh Pirates.

The hirings, announced Tuesday, had been expected since Tracy was hired as Pittsburgh's manager on Oct. 11.

BRAVES' MOVES: Pitcher John Thomson's $4.75 million option for 2006 was exercised Tuesday by the Atlanta Braves.

Thomson, a right-handed starter, was 4-6 with a 4.47 ERA in 17 games this year. He missed about three months with a strained flexor tendon in his right middle finger.

In 2004, Thomson's first season with the Braves, he was 14-8 with a 3.73 ERA.

Atlanta could have bought out the option for $500,000.

MARINERS' MOVES: The Seattle Mariners declined their options Tuesday on reliever Shigetoshi Hasegawa and shortstop Pokey Reese.

Hasegawa pitched in 46 games last season, going 1-3 with a 4.19 ERA. The Mariners turned down a $3.1 million option to bring him back for a fourth season with the team. Instead, the right-hander receives a $325,000 buyout.

Reese missed the 2005 season because of a right shoulder injury which required surgery. He signed with the Mariners in January to be their starting shortstop but did not play in a single game for them.

Reese last played for Boston's World Series championship team in 2004, mainly as a late-game defensive replacement. He gets a $300,000 buyout instead of a $2.25 million salary with Seattle next season.