Orioles agree to one-year contract with infielder Gomez


December 18, 2006|By Jeff Zrebiec

The Orioles have agreed to terms on a one-year deal with utility man Chris Gomez, who will return for his third season in Baltimore.

"It's nice to be in a place for a few years," said Gomez, who received a modest raise from the $850,000 he made last year. "I was bouncing around for a few years, and I didn't like that a whole lot. Being in a place for three years is very appealing."

After missing most of the first half after breaking a bone in his left hand, Gomez, 35, finished with a .341 average, two home runs and 17 RBIs in 55 games.

The Orioles value Gomez's versatility. Last season, he made 18 starts at first base, 13 at second, two at shortstop and four at third base. He'll compete with Brandon Fahey and recent trade acquisition Freddie Bynum for a utility spot.

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