Derek Jeter can admit it now: He was definitely getting steamed at the New York Yankees.

While Jeter tried to keep talks quiet as the sides negotiated, the Yankees went public with suggestions his increasing age and decreased numbers should result in a pay cut.

At one point, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said the 36-year-old shortstop should explore other options.

"I was pretty angry about it, and I let that be known," Jeter said Tuesday after finalizing a $51 million, three-year contract that cut his salary. "I was angry about it because I was the one that said I didn't want to do it. I said I was the one that wasn't going to do it."

At a news conference at the team's spring training home in Tampa to announce the agreement, Yankees managing general partner Hal Steinbrenner and Cashman maintained there will be no lingering fallout.

"A big happy family," Jeter said. "You move past it. It's over with, and I won't bring it up again."

In other Yankees news, after meeting with Cliff Lee's agent at the winter meetings, Cashman is awaiting a go-ahead from Darek Braunecker to make a contract offer.

"If they're ready to take one, I'm willing to get serious," Cashman said. "We're just waiting for them to get to that position. I know what we're willing to do and how far we're willing to go. We'd to love to add Cliff Lee to the Yankee rotation, there's no doubt about that. He knows that."

Ruling in Dodgers case. A judge has ruled that a postnuptial marital agreement giving sole ownership of the Los Angeles Dodgers to Frank McCourt is not valid, a spokesman for his estranged wife, Jamie McCourt, said Tuesday.

The decision means the Dodgers could be shared under California's community property law, a spokesman said.

The ruling was not expected to affect the Dodgers' operations, but it may lead both sides to resume settlement negotiations.

Putz to D'backs. Free agent reliever J.J. Putz and the Arizona Diamondbacks have reached agreement on a two-year contract worth $10 million.

The 33-year-old Putz went 7-5 with three saves and a 2.83 ERA in 60 games for the Chicago White Sox last season. The former all-star closer with Seattle struck out 65 in 54 innings.

Rockies add Wiggington. Free agent infielder Ty Wigginton and the Colorado Rockies have reached agreement on a two-year contract worth $8 million. The 33-year-old Wigginton became a first-time all-star last season with Baltimore. He hit 22 home runs with 76 RBIs while batting .248.

Wigginton played all over the infield this year, moving around between first base, second base and third base. The nine-year veteran has played for the Mets, Pittsburgh, Tampa Bay, Houston, and the Orioles.

The deal came a day after Melvin Mora, who filled mostly the same role with Colorado last season, signed with Arizona.

Conlin honored. Bill Conlin of The Philadelphia Daily News has won the Hall of Fame's J.G. Taylor Spink Award for his work as a baseball writer.

His election by members of the Baseball Writers' Association of America was announced Tuesday at the winter meetings in Florida. He will be honored at the Hall's induction ceremonies on July 24.

Conlin wrote for the Evening Bulletin before joining the Daily News in 1965. He covered the Phillies from 1966 to 1986, and became a sports columnist in 1987.