Brewers sign Japanese slugger Norichika Aoki

Published January 17, 2012

| Sports Network

The Milwaukee Brewers have signed three-time year contract with a club option for 2014.

The Brewers won the negotiating rights to Aoki on December 19.

The 30-year-old Aoki has played his entire eight-year professional career with the Tokyo Yakult Swallows, batting .329 with 84 HR, 385 RBI and 164 stolen bases in 985 games.

The Central League batting champion in 2005 (.344), 2007 (.346) and 2010 (.358), Aoki won the CL Rookie of the Year award in 2005. He is also a six- time Golden Glove Award winner.

Aoki has participated in both World Baseball Classic events (2006 and 2009) as well as the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Also on Tuesday, the Brewers signed pitchers Francisco Rodriguez and Kameron Loe to one-year contracts.

Rodriguez's deal is worth a reported $8 million, $3.5 million less than the $11.5 million he earned last season.

The major-league record holder for saves in a single season (62), Rodriguez had a 6-2 record with a 2.64 ERA and 23 saves last season, serving mainly as an eighth-inning man with Milwaukee.

Loe went 4-7 with a 3.50 ERA in 72 appearances for Milwaukee last year.

URL

http://www.foxnews.com/sports/2012/01/17/brewers-sign-japanese-slugger-norichika-aoki/