suntimes
CRACKLING 
Weather Updates

Marlon Byrd close to deal with Phillies

ORLANDO, Fla. — Marlon Byrd is closing in on an agreement with the Philadelphia Phillies after rebounding to hit a career-high 24 homers this year for the New York Mets and Pittsburgh.

A person familiar with the negotiations said Tuesday that if the deal is completed it probably will be for two years, and the agreement could be put in place soon. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because no statements were authorized.

The 36-year-old outfielder was acquired by the Pirates on Aug. 27 and hit .364 in six postseason games, with one homer and five RBIs. He batted .291 during the season and had 88 RBIs, one short of his career best.

Byrd was suspended for 50 games in 2012 following a positive test for a drug that can reduce side effects of steroid use and increase testosterone. At the time, Byrd said he mistakenly used the medication for a recurrence of a condition that earlier required surgery. He says he did not use it for performance enhancement.

His talks with the Phillies were first reported by radio station WIP.



© 2014 Sun-Times Media, LLC. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied or distributed without permission. For more information about reprints and permissions, visit www.suntimesreprints.com. To order a reprint of this article, click here.