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Yanks, A-Rod make $30M marketing deal

Home-run achievements by slugger key to pact, which skirts MLB bonus rules.

NEW YORK — Alex Rodriguez and the New York Yankees have agreed on a $30 million marketing package based on home-run achievements that could raise the total value of his new contract to $305 million over 10 years.

Under the agreement, which remains to be finalized, Rodriguez could receive $6 million each for tying the home-run levels of Willie Mays (660), Babe Ruth (714), Hank Aaron (755) and Barry Bonds (762), and an additional $6 million for breaking Bonds’ major league record.

The Yankees could designate each level as a historic event, enabling Rodriguez to receive the added money in exchange for additional personal appearances and signed memorabilia for the club. That enabled the agreement to be allowed by the players’ association and the commissioner’s office. Baseball generally prohibits bonuses based on statistics such as home runs.

Details of the agreement were first reported by The New York Times on its Web site and were confirmed Saturday by a baseball official who spoke on condition of anonymity because those aspects have not been made public. The commissioner’s office and the players’ association have approved the concept of the marketing agreement, the official said.

Rodriguez has 518 homers, 17th on the career list. He opted out of the final three seasons of his record $252 million, 10-year contract on Oct. 28, forfeiting $72 million, and became a free agent the following day. About a week later, he approached the Yankees without agent Scott Boras and then with the help of two Goldman Sachs managing directors negotiated a $275 million, 10-year contract.

The outline of that deal was agreed to over the weekend of Nov. 10-11, and Rodriguez met three days later in Tampa, Fla., with Hank and Hal Steinbrenner, the sons of Yankees owner George Steinbrenner.

New York and Boras are working toward finalizing the agreement.

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