Giants sign ex-Mariner Morse

SAN FRANCISCO — Michael Morse and the San Francisco Giants reached agreement on a one-year contract Thursday, and he is expected to be the team’s starting left fielder.

The deal is pending a physical, assistant general manager Bobby Evans said. Traded from Seattle to Baltimore on Aug. 30, Morse also can play first base and right field to give manager Bruce Bochy some flexibility in writing his lineup. If Morse becomes the everyday left fielder in place of Gregor Blanco, Bochy would have Blanco available coming off the bench, to fill in elsewhere or as a late-game defensive replacement.

Morse missed time this past season with both a broken right pinkie and strained right quadriceps before returning from the disabled list in late July. The 31-year-old nine-year veteran, batted .215 with 13 home runs and 27 RBI in 88 games between the Mariners and Orioles.

He will fill a void at a position the Giants had been determined to upgrade this winter, though general manager Brian Sabean went into this week’s baseball winter meetings in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., uncertain of what he might be able to find to fill out his roster.

Morse will be part of an outfield featuring Angel Pagan in center field and Hunter Pence in right. Pagan received a $40 million, four-year contract last December, while Pence was rewarded with a $90 million, five-year contract before the season ended. He played every game this year.

San Francisco already has had a productive offseason. The Giants missed the playoffs one year after winning their second World Series championship in three years, and Sabean worked to keep his pitching staff intact.

Right-hander Ryan Vogelsong finalized a $5 million, one-year contract last week to re-join a rotation featuring newcomer Tim Hudson, recently re-signed two-time NL Cy Young Award winner Tim Lincecum, lefty Madison Bumgarner and right-hander Matt Cain. The Giants also re-signed left-handed reliever Javier Lopez to a $13 million, three-year contract last month.

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