NEW YORK Alex Rodriguez and the New York Yankees have agreed on the framework of a 10-year, $275 million contract, New York media reported on Thursday.
Reports of the agreement, believed to offer further compensation as he reaches home run milestones, came a day after the player said he had contacted the Yankees in a bid to return to the team.
"Things with Alex Rodriguez are looking good," Yankees senior vice president Hank Steinbrenner told The New York Times in the latest twist to where Rodriguez would play after declaring himself a free agent.
Rodriguez, an 11-time All-Star, led the majors with 54 home runs, 156 runs batted in and 143 runs scored in 2007 and is the favorite to win the American League Most Valuable Player award.
The third baseman, who played the last four seasons with the Yankees, left the club last month when he exercised an escape clause in his 10-year, $252 million contract.
The Yankees had said they would not negotiate with him as a free agent, instead wanting to offer an extension that would enable them to receive $21.3 million the Texas Rangers were to contribute over the last three years of his contract under terms of their trade before the 2004 season.
Rodriguez, baseball's highest paid player, admitted on Wednesday he had asked the Yankees for a meeting to discuss staying with the team. The Daily News reported he had met with Yankees officials on Wednesday.
The contract, which is still being finalized and will keep him the game's highest paid player, is expected to reward him for reaching home run milestones and if he surpasses the career home run mark held by Barry Bonds, which now stands at 762.
The New York Post said the contract would be structured as a revenue-sharing arrangement tied to home run marks, since milestone bonuses are not allowed by Major League Baseball.
Rodriguez has hit 518 home runs and became the youngest player to reach 500 last season.
(Writing by Larry Fine; Editing by Greg Stutchbury)