Negotiators for the major and minor leagues reached agreement yesterday on a seven-year contract that will preserve organized baseball's 87-year-old structure.
The sides had said earlier in the week that they were near agreement and they wrapped up the final two issues yesterday during day-long negotiations.
The deal, which has a reopener after the 1994 season, will be sent to the minor leagues today and the leagues will vote Thursday either in a conference call or by fax ballot.
Major-league spokesman Rich Levin said he was not sure when major-league owners would vote on ratification.
Each side had threatened to go off on its own.
The sides agreed yesterday to the method under which major-league expansion teams will compensate the minor-league teams for territory they are taking over.
They also agreed to a four-member committee -- two from the majors and two from the minors -- to oversee the reaffiliation of the approximately 60 minor-league teams whose player-development contracts had been canceled.
There will be a 10-day window for reaffiliation.
ARBITRATION: The Oakland Athletics' Bob Welch, Los Angeles Dodgers' Fernando Valenzuela and Boston Red Sox's Tom Brunansky were among 17 free agents offered salary arbitration yesterday, allowing them to continue negotiating with their former clubs through Jan. 8.
Teams faced a midnight deadline to offer arbitration or lose the chance to re-sign their former free agents until May 1. Players offered arbitration have until Dec. 19 to accept or reject the offers, while those refused arbitration may not negotiate with their former clubs until after May 1.
Also offered arbitration by their former teams were Donnie Hill and Max Venable (California Angels), Dan Petry (Detroit Tigers), Bill Krueger (Milwaukee Brewers), Randy Bush (Minnesota Twins), Scott Sanderson (Oakland), Craig McMurtry (Texas Rangers), Juan Agosto (Houston Astros), Mickey Hatcher and Juan Samuel (Los Angeles), Gary Redus (Pittsburgh Pirates), Dave Schmidt (Montreal Expos), Denny Walling (St. Louis Cardinals) and Dennis Rasmussen (San Diego Padres).
Among those players who had not yet been offered arbitration were: Willie Randolph (Oakland), Ken Griffey Sr. (Seattle Mariners), Charlie Hough (Texas), John Candelaria (Toronto Blue Jays), Jim Presley (Atlanta Braves), Rich Mahler (Cincinnati Reds), Glenn Wilson (Houston), Wally Backman, Rafael Belliard and Don Slaught (Pittsburgh), John Tudor (St. Louis), Fred Lynn (San Diego) and Gary Carter (San Francisco Giants).
In one deal yesterday, infielder Fred Manrique agreed to a non-guaranteed $325,000, one-year contract with California. Manrique, 29, began the 1990 season with Texas, was traded to Minnesota in mid-April and finished the season in the minors.
* ROSE: Pete Rose plans to move to Florida after he is released from prison and is thinking about going into the restaurant business, a television station reported.
Rose said during a rare interview at a federal prison camp in Illinois that he wants to put his legal troubles behind him when he is released, WLWT-TV said.
Rose also repeated his assertion that he deserves a place in the Hall of Fame, the television station said.
"I don't think of it as a gift," Rose was quoted as saying. "I've given 24 years of my life to baseball. I think I've earned it."
Rose, a former Reds manager who is baseball's all-time hits leader, began serving a five-month sentence on Aug. 8 for failing to report income to tax authorities. He was banned from baseball in 1989 for gambling.
* MARINERS: Ken Griffey and his son, Ken Jr., the father-and-son outfielders for Seattle last season, plan to be part of a group heading to Saudi Arabia soon to entertain U.S. troops stationed there as part of Operation Desert Shield.
2(about Ken. Sr., presently a free agent.