Righthander Brandon McCarthy reached agreement with the Diamondbacks on a $15.5 million, two-year contract, a person with knowledge of the negotiations told the Associated Press Friday. The deal is pending a physical, especially important for McCarthy, who was hit in the right side of the head by a line drive Sept. 5. He sustained an epidural hemorrhage, brain contusion, and skull fracture, then underwent a two-hour surgery. Last month, McCarthy was cleared to begin working out by renowned concussion expert Dr. Michael Collins at the University of Pittsburgh. McCarthy went 8-6 with a 3.24 ERA in his sixth big league season and second with the A’s . . . Outfielder Brett Gardner and the Yankees agreed to a $2.85 million, one-year contract that avoids salary arbitration. Gardner was limited to 31 at-bats last season because of a right elbow injury.
Average salary reaches record $3.2m
Baseball’s average player salary increased 3.8 percent this year to a record $3.2 million. According to final figures released by the Players Association, the rise was the steepest since 2007. The boost was helped by an increase in the minimum salary from $414,000 to $480,000. The Yankees had the highest average for the 14th consecutive season at $6.88 million. At nearly $685,000 Houston had the lowest average since the 2006 Marlins . . . Former Wellesley High and Duke University standout Nate Freiman was obtained by the Astros via the Rule V draft from the Padres. The 25-year-old first baseman hit .298 with 24 homers and 105 RBIs at Double A San Antonio last season.
62 by Love, Snedeker leads ShootoutUS Ryder Cup captain Davis Love III and Brandt Snedeker shot a 10-under-par 62 in modified alternate-shot play to take the first-round lead in the Franklin Templeton Shootout in Naples, Fla. Love and Snedeker made 10 birdies for the lowest score in the modified alternate-shot format in the 24-year-old tournament’s 12 years in Naples. Kenny Perry and Sean O’Hair were two strokes back . . . China’s Shanshan Feng shot a 5-under 67 to take a five-stroke lead into the final round of the Dubai Ladies Masters.
Dewi Claire Schreefel was second after a course-record 63 . . . Australia’s Marcus Fraser took a one-stroke lead in the Australia Open in Sydney, shooting his second straight 3-under 69 for a 138 total . . .
Charl Schwartzel shot his second straight 7-under 65 to increase his lead to four strokes in the Asian Tour’s Thailand Golf Championship in Chon Buri.
Utah St. player expects to play again
Utah State basketball player Danny Berger, who nearly died after collapsing during practice Tuesday, said he should be able to play again. After Berger fell into cardiac arrest he was revived with a defibrillator. Doctors have inserted a tiny defibrillator in his chest in case his heart stops again. Because of that, his left arm must stay in a sling for three weeks. After that, doctors say he should be cleared to play . . . Hundreds turned out at Saint Louis University to honor basketball coach Rick Majerus, who died Dec. 1 of heart failure at age 64 . . . Ben Jay, a senior associate athletics director at Ohio State, will take over as AD at Hawaii, replacing Jim Donovan . . . Tina Maze of Slovenia won her third race of the season by finishing first in both runs of a World Cup super-combined event in St. Moritz, Switzerland, while Lindsey Vonn failed to finish . . . Ten weeks after the Wizards announced that John Wall would miss eight weeks because of a stress injury in his left patella, the injured point guard is still unable to practice. Wizards president Ernie Grunfeld said the team has no timetable for his return . . . Georgetown goalkeeper Tomas Gomez blocked Helge Leikvang’s shot in the final round of a shootout, lifting the Hoyas over Maryland, 4-3, on penalty kicks following a 4-4 tie in the NCAA Division 1 soccer semifinals in Hoover, Ala. Georgetown will face seven-time champion Indiana, a 1-0 winner of Creighton, in Sunday’s final.