Gillick balks at Alomar price 3 years, $25 million 'out of everybody's price range,' GM says

November 30, 1995|By Buster Olney | Buster Olney,SUN STAFF

Orioles general manager Pat Gillick had the same reaction last night to the reported three-year, $25 million asking price for All-Star second baseman Roberto Alomar as the Toronto Blue Jays and New York Yankees: No, thank you.

Gillick said last night that he hadn't received that request from Alomar's agent yet, but he mentioned the published figures to Orioles' front-office members in a 3 1/2 -hour conference call he was host to yesterday.

Orioles assistant GM Frank Robinson, Gillick said, quipped "that he would play second base alongside Alomar for $25 million."

Alomar's agent reportedly asked the Yankees and Blue Jays for a $4 million signing bonus, and a $7 million salary per year.

"I think the agent [Jaime Torres] would defend that asking price by saying the contract is for a shorter term, so the team might be paying a higher salary, but be exposed [to potential financial loss] for a shorter period of time," Gillick said.

"I think that's out of everybody's price range."

Yankees general manager Bob Watson and Toronto GM Gord Ash indicated there is no way they would meet that salary demand. The Blue Jays reportedly have offered Alomar a three-year, $15 million contract -- the same figures many within the Orioles' organization thought would be needed to land Alomar.

Alomar's demands may be increasing interest in the other marquee free-agent second baseman. Barry Axelrod, Craig Biggio's agent, said yesterday that eight teams have asked about signing his client.

The San Diego Padres and Colorado Rockies are making strong bids, according to NL sources; the Orioles have not yet contacted Axelrod, although Gillick is expected to at least make inquiries.

Gillick said he has had a second conversation with the agent for free-agent designated hitter Paul Molitor, although he has not made an offer.

The Milwaukee Brewers offered Molitor a two-year deal for around $2 million per year this week, with a guarantee that he will become a member of the front office after he retires.

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