Brewers sign Japanese outfielder Norichika Aoki

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UPDATE: Aoki and the Brewers have agreed to a two-year deal with an option for 2014.

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With two hours remaining until the deadline to sign Norichika Aoki general manager Doug Melvin told Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that the Brewers are “close” to a deal with the Japanese outfielder.

Milwaukee got a 30-day window in which to negotiate with Aoki after bidding $2.5 million for his exclusive rights last month and put him through a private workout in Arizona recently.

Based on previous deals with Japanese players through the posting process Aoki seems likely to get around $2-3 million from the Brewers, although that could change depending on the length of the contract.

Report: Momentum in talks between Mariners, Jon Jay

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MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reports that there is some momentum in talks between the Mariners and free agent outfielder Jon Jay.

Jay, 32, hit .296/.374/.375 in 433 plate appearances with the Cubs last season, which is adequate. He’s heralded more for his defense and his ability to play all three outfield spots.

The Mariners are losing center fielder Jarrod Dyson to free agency and likely don’t want to rely on Guillermo Heredia next season, hence the interest in Jay. The free agent class for center fielders is otherwise relatively weak.