Shawon Dunston, who could have filed for free agency after the season, decided to remain with the Chicago Cubs and agreed yesterday to a $12 million, four-year contract.
The 28-year-old infielder is batting .260 with 12 home runs, 50 RBI and 21 stolen bases. He hit .262 with 17 homers and 66 RBI last year.
Dunston, who is making $2.1 million this season, gets a $1.5 million signing bonus, $2.1 million next season, $3.1 million in 1993, $2 million in 1994 and $3.3 million in 1995.
Meanwhile, Jim Essian conceded yesterday that his chances of coming back to manage the club next year are not good.
He will meet with general manager Jim Frey on Monday, and it is reported that when the session is over, Frey will be manager.
Scouting director Dick Balderson is said to be in line to get Frey's job if Frey takes over again as manager.
* Richard Ravitch, former head of New York's transportation system and a losing candidate for mayor in 1989, is being considered to take over baseball's Player Relations Committee.
* CARDINALS: Pedro Guerrero said he was aware another woman has filed a paternity suit against him, but the St. Louis first baseman did not provide any details on the matter.
A woman from New York who said Guerrero fathered her two vTC children claims that the baseball player threatened to hire somebody to kill her unless she dropped a paternity suit.
* YANKEES: Sources told Newsday that general partner Robert Nederlander, who took over the job from George Steinbrenner a little more than a year ago, is preparing to step down within a few weeks.
Nederlander is said to be unhappy with the amount of time his Yankees job is taking away from his other business interests.