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Texas Rangers & Mike Napoli Likely to Settle on One-Year Deal

Tom Pennington, Getty Images
Tom Pennington, Getty Images

The Texas Rangers main focus may be on signing Japanese pitcher Yu Darvish at the moment, but that doesn’t mean the ball-clubs shut down all other business.

Texas is still discussing long-term contracts for certain players they have identified as being key members of the team, and one of those players are catcher Mike Napoli.

General manager Jon Daniels said Wednesday night that after talks on a multi-year contract stalled, the club has turned its focus to a one-year deal that could allow Napoli to leave via free agency after 2012.

“We agreed to focus on a one-year deal,” Daniels said. “We just weren’t close enough right now. That doesn’t preclude us revisiting it down the line. Mike’s an important part of the club.”

Napoli was acquired from the Los Angeles Angels prior to the 2011 season to be a part-time catcher and DH. He ended up becoming a regular in the lineup and hit .320 with a career-high 30 homers. He then hit .328 in the postseason.

The Rangers are having ongoing discussions with other players as well, including outfielder Josh Hamilton, second baseman Ian Kinsler and pitcher Derek Holland. However, Napoli is the only one that appears to have come to a point where a long-term deal has little chance of happening anytime soon.

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