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Cuddyer agrees to 3-year deal with Colorado

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sports Willmar, 56201
Willmar Minnesota 2208 Trott Ave. SW / P.O. Box 839 56201

By Arnie Stapleton

AP Sports Writer

DENVER -- The Colorado Rockies and free agent outfielder Michael Cuddyer have agreed to a three-year deal worth about $30 million.

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CBS Sports and the Denver Post first reported the deal Friday morning.

The former Minnesota Twins star is the first big-time free agent the Rockies have signed since 2000, when they brought in pitchers Mike Hampton and Denny Neagle for a combined $172 million.

Cuddyer, who hit .284 with 20 home runs and 70 RBIs last season, also was pursued by the Philadelphia Phillies and Seattle Mariners.

Cuddyer brings a big bat and a veteran presence to Colorado, where general manager Dan O'Dowd has talked about changing the clubhouse culture after a disappointing 2011 season.

With Cuddyer's arrival, Seth Smith could return to a reserve role or serve as trade bait.

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