The New York Yankees officially signed CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett yesterday, pitchers they hope will restore the team's glory when it moves to the new, $1.3 billion Yankee Stadium next year.

The bill was $243.5 million, a lot in most places but a trifle in a city where a financier is accused of swindling billions.

Sabathia's seven-year, $161 million contract is the highest ever for a pitcher. Burnett's five-year, $82.5 million deal would be the highest on many teams.

MLB institutes freeze.

Major League Baseball told its employees that it will institute a hiring freeze, freeze salaries and take back 20 percent of employees' vacation time for 2009, CNBC reported on its web site.

MLB said there would be no layoffs.

Drug case continues.

Federal appeals judges in Pasadena, Calif., voiced skepticism that prosecutors had the right to seize urine samples of more than 100 major-league players not originally involved in the Balco drug investigation.

In a case dealing with the government's search-and-seizure power in the digital age, an 11-member panel of the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals must decide whether prosecutors legally seized the names and urine samples of 104 players during a raid in April 2004.

Clemens case.

Roger Clemens' former personal trainer cooperated with investigators looking into steroids in baseball under threat of prosecution, an assistant U.S. attorney said in a court filing.

In a declaration filed in federal court in Houston as part of the pitcher's defamation lawsuit against the trainer, Brian McNamee, Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew Parrella said he told McNamee that he was not a target of the investigation but could become one if he failed to cooperate.

McNamee told former Sen. George Mitchell's investigators that Clemens had used steroids and human growth hormone before they were banned by baseball. Clemens has denied the accusations.


Outfielder Trot Nixon, 34, agreed to a minor- league contract with Milwaukee that includes an invitation to training camp.


Detroit agreed to terms on a one-year contract with catcher Matt Treanor, the husband of Misty May-Treanor, a two-time Olympic gold medalist in beach volleyball.


Rafael Furcal accepted a deal to remain with Los Angeles, the star shortstop's agent, Arn Tellem, confirmed. Furcal accepted a three-year contract worth at least $30 million to stay in LA.


Free agent Aaron Boone agreed to a $750,000, one-year contract with the Houston.


Dave Smith, 53, a former all-star closer who holds the Houston record for games pitched, died Wednesday in his home near San Diego, apparently of a heart attack. He saved 216 games from 1980 to 1992.

Dykstra mag on hold.

The New York Post reported that former Phillie Lenny Dykstra's magazine, Players Club, is in financial trouble.

The last issue of Players Club was published in October and, the Post said, the November issue will be combined into a year-end double issue that has yet to appear.

Dykstra launched the magazine to help professional athletes handle their money so they don't end up broke.