With Derek Jeter's $118.5-million, seven-year contract on hold, the Yankees instead agreed Thursday to a $10-million, one-year deal with their star shortstop.
"I said it before: I'd like to sign a long-term deal, but it's not up to me, it's up the team to make that decision," said Jeter, who is in Tampa.
"I don't think the team owes me a long-term deal. That's not how it works. I have two more years. Then you can start negotiating. Then you can make decisions on your own."
Jeter, 25, is eligible for free agency after the 2001 season, when he will have six years of major-league service.
Manager Joe Torre doesn't want Jeter to hit the open market. He wants owner George Steinbrenner to show Jeter the money.
"I'd like to see him sign a long-term contract because, to me, he's the future of the franchise," Torre said.
"He's going to play the same whether he's making a dollar or $100-million."
Knowing the price goes only up, Yankees officials have been trying to convince Steinbrenner to give Jeter a long-term deal. Steinbrenner, however, is sometimes reluctant to set salary marks.
ASTROS: Right-hander Chris Holt avoided a salary arbitration hearing by agreeing to a one-year contract worth $1.025-million.
ATHLETICS: Right-hander Ariel Prieto, who hasn't pitched in the major leagues since April 1998, lost his salary arbitration case and will get $300,000 this year instead of $500,000. Prieto, 30, is recovering from reconstructive elbow and shoulder surgery.
BRAVES: John Rocker's appeal of his suspension will start Wednesday. Lawyers for the players association and the commissioner's office met and set the timetable for the hearing before arbitrator Shyam Das. The union says baseball doesn't have "just cause" to punish Rocker for his slurs against minorities, foreigners and gays to Sports Illustrated in December.
CARDINALS: Shawon Dunston and Brian McRae were among four free agents who agreed on minor-league contracts. First baseman Eduardo Perez and catcher Rick Wilkins also agreed to deals. All four were invited to spring training, which starts Feb. 17 in Jupiter.
REDS: Radio broadcaster Marty Brennaman was chosen as the latest recipient of the Ford C. Frick Award, presented annually to a broadcaster. He'll be honored July 23 along with former first baseman Tony Perez, who was voted into the Hall of Fame last month.
AGENTS: In a move that gives it about one in six major-league players, SFX Entertainment said it agreed to buy the business of agents Jim Bronner and Bob Gilhooley. SFX, which in 1998 bought out Michael Jordan's agent, David Falk, becomes the largest agent in baseball, with a roster that includes many top players.
UMPIRES: Richie Phillips and the Major League Umpires Association, using their last appeal, will ask the National Labor Relations Board today to overturn the election that kicked them out in November.