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Braves notebook: Diaz signs one-year deal

POSTED: January 29, 2008 5:03 a.m.

ATLANTA — The Atlanta Braves avoided salary arbitration with Matt Diaz by agreeing to terms with the left fielder Friday on a one-year contract.

Diaz will earn $1,225,000 with $12,500 bonuses for 450 and 500 plate appearances.

Diaz, 29, hit .338 with 12 homers and 45 RBIs in 135 games last season.

Diaz hit .352 after April 30, the third-best mark in the majors. Since the start of the 2006 season, he has hit .333, tied for the second-best mark in the majors.

Diaz also tied for fourth in the majors with 14 hits as a pinch-hitter last season.

Closer Rafael Soriano is the Braves’ only remaining arbitration-eligible player.

Braves infielder Infante has hand surgery
Atlanta Braves infielder Omar Infante had surgery on his left hand Friday and could miss the first month of spring training.

Infante, acquired from the Chicago Cubs on Dec. 4, had surgery to repair a mid-shaft fracture of the fifth metacarpal in his left hand. The operation was performed in Atlanta by Braves physician Dr. Gary Lourie.

Infante, 26, was hit by a pitch in a Venezuelan winter league game last Saturday. He had a pin placed in the hand and is expected to wear a cast for at least four weeks.

Infante is expected to be a backup infielder this season.



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