The New York Yankees reacquired righthander Javier Vazquez yesterday in a trade with the Atlanta Braves for outfielder Melky Cabrera, a move that pushed the Yanks' payroll for 2010 over $200 million.
New York also got lefthander Boone Logan as part of the deal. The Braves obtained a pair of pitching prospects, lefthander Mike Dunn and righthander Arodys Vizcaino, along with about $500,000.
New York now has an opening in left field, allowing the Yankees to perhaps pursue Mark DeRosa. They do not appear interested in re-signing Johnny Damon or going after free agents Matt Holliday and Jason Bay.
Atlanta had six starting pitchers and felt free to deal the 33-year-old Vazquez, who was 14-10 for the Yankees in 2004.
His first stint in New York ended miserably, when he relieved Kevin Brown trailing by 2-0 in Game 7 of the AL Championship Series against Boston and allowed a first-pitch grand slam to Damon, then gave up a two-run homer to Damon in the fourth.
Vazquez was 15-10 with a 2.87 ERA and 238 strikeouts this year for the Braves, and finished fourth in the NL Cy Young Award voting.
His arrival allows the Yankees - whose rotation is led by CC Sabathia, Andy Pettitte, and A.J. Burnett - to keep either Joba Chamberlain or Phil Hughes in the bullpen.
Marquis finalizes deal. Veteran Jason Marquis, a free-agent righthander, signed a $15 million, two-year contract with the Washington Nationals.
Marquis, 31, went 15-13 with a 4.04 ERA for the Colorado Rockies last season.
Blue Jays-Mariners trade? Toronto is closing in on a trade with Seattle for former No. 1 draft choice Brandon Morrow, a righthander, in exchange for fellow reliever Brandon League and a prospect, a source close to the deal said.
Orioles sign Atkins. Third baseman Garrett Atkins, 30, and Baltimore finalized their $4.5 million, one-year contract.
Atkins slumped to a .226 average with 9 homers and 48 RBIs for Colorado last season after hitting .286 with 21 homers and 99 RBIs in 2008.
Rangers get Oliver. Reliever Darren Oliver, 39, and Texas finalized a $3.5 million, one-year contract that includes a club option for 2011.
He spent the last three seasons with the Los Angeles Angels and was 5-1 with a 2.71 ERA in 63 games in 2009.
This will be his third stint with Texas. The lefthander began his career with the Rangers, pitching for them from 1993 to '98.
Mets court knuckleballer. New York is nearing agreement on a minor-league contract with R.A. Dickey, 35.
The righthander made 14 starts for Seattle in 2008. He was used as a reliever for Minnesota last season, when he went 1-1 with a 4.62 ERA in one start and 34 relief appearances.
He is 22-28 with a 5.43 ERA in 48 starts and 96 relief appearances in seven big-league seasons despite pitching his entire career without the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow.
Source: Umps have a deal. Major League Baseball and its umpires have completed negotiations for a labor contract and are likely to announce an agreement today, according to a person familiar with the talks.