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January 5, 2011

Orioles make Izturis signing official

The Orioles announced today that they officially have signed shortstop Cesar Izturis to a one-year, $1.5 million deal. He could more than double that value based on certain incentive bonuses.

The sides had agreed to terms in December, but it wasn’t official until Izturis took and passed his team physical, which he did Tuesday. Izturis lives in Venezuela in the winter and already had a team physical at the end of the 2010 season, so there was no real rush in getting him back to Baltimore.

Izturis was the club’s starting shortstop in 2009 and 2010. He will now be the Orioles’ utility infielder, backing up newly acquired shortstop J.J. Hardy and second baseman Brian Roberts.

Izturis, 30, batted .230 (109-for-473) in 150 games with the Orioles in 2010. He was second in fielding percentage (.985) and fifth in assists (382) and putouts (212) among American League shortstops last season.

Now up on the medical table is Derrek Lee. The first baseman’s physical is scheduled for today, and his one-year deal should be officially announced by Thursday, assuming all goes well medically.

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Posted by Dan Connolly at 11:11 AM | | Comments (0)

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About the bloggers
A Baltimore native, Dan Connolly has been covering sports for 14 years, and baseball and the Orioles for 10 seasons, including the past six with The Sun. His first year covering baseball on a daily basis was Cal Ripken Jr.'s final season as a player. It's believed that is just a coincidence.

Steve Gould is an assistant sports editor for The Sun, overseeing Orioles coverage. The Columbia native joined The Sun as a sports copy editor in 2006 after graduating from the University of Maryland.

Peter Schmuck has been covering baseball for a lot longer than Steve Gould has been on this earth. He is now a general sports columnist, but has been a beat writer covering three major league teams (the Dodgers, Angels and Orioles) and also spent a decade as the Sun's national baseball writer. If you want more of his insight on the Orioles and other sports issues, check out his personal blog -- The Schmuck Stops Here.

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