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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Tuesday, January 19, 2010

MLB: Felix Hernandez, Mariners closing in on 5-year deal


GREGG BELL
AP Sports Writer

SEATTLE A person familiar with the negotiations says ace Felix Hernandez and the Seattle Mariners are closing in on a five-year contract that would avoid arbitration and prevent him from becoming a free agent after the 2011 season.

The person confirmed the progress of negotiations to The Associated Press on Tuesday, speaking on condition of anonymity because the deal was not yet finished. Hernandez is due in Seattle on Thursday for a physical needed to finalize the contract, the person said.

Seattle and representatives for the 23-year-old right-hander were due to exchange proposed arbitration figures Tuesday.

ESPN.com first reported an agreement of unknown length had been reached.