Suzuki signs 4-year deal with Oakland
By Fred Guzman
The Oakland A’s know a good thing when they have it. That’s why they’ve retained the services of Kurt Suzuki for the long term, rewarding the catcher from Maui with a four-year contract worth $16.25 million. The value of the deal could increase by another $9.25 million if Suzuki plays in 118 games in 2013. By signing him to an extended contract, the A’s avoid having to deal with arbitration down the road and, perhaps, even delaying by one year when Suzuki will become eligible for free agency.
Oakland didn’t have to wait very long to return on its investment as Suzuki made major offensive contributions on Saturday and Sunday in wins over the Chicago White Sox. On Saturday the 26-year-old collected three hits – including his 11th homer of the season – while scoring twice and driving in a pair of runs in a 10-2 romp. On Sunday, he had two more hits and added three RBI in a 6-4 decision. The weekend outburst helped boost Suzuki’s average to .264 to go with 36 runs and 42 RBI.
After hitting safely in eight straight games, Philly’s Shane Victorino is 0-for-his-last-8, dropping is average to .254 – although the Phils pulled out of a recent tailspin by winning four in a row. Kanekoa Texeira pitched one inning in relief for KC, giving up two hits and run, in yesterday’s 12-6 loss to the Yankees.
WILSON FALLS SHORT: Dean Wilson appeared to be rolling along to his second PGA Tour victory. The Castle High graduate had put together five straight rounds of 5-under 65 and had opened up a four-stroke lead going into the final 18 holes of the Canadian Open in Toronto.
But the wheels fell for Wilson on Sunday. He shot a 2-over 72 and had to settle for a second-place finish behind Carl Pettersson of Sweden, who closed with a flourish after barely making the cut. On Saturday, Pettersson fired a tournament-record 60 and followed that up on Sunday with a 67. He trailed Wilson by six strokes with 11 holes left before rallying to secure his fourth career tour victory.
Wilson, who was playing on a sponsor’s exemption, earned $550,000 for his runner-up showing – a marked improvement over recent months for the 40-year-old Kaneohe native who now lives in Las Vegas. Wilson had missed five cuts in his previous six tour outings. Wilson’s only tour victory came in the 2006 International.
Things didn’t go well for Michelle Wie in the Evian Masters event in France. Wie opened with a promising 4-under 68 for a share of fourth place. But her bid fell apart on Saturday, when she shot a quintuple boogie nine on the 10th hole, finishing with a 77. Wie ended up in a tie for 31st place.