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AP source: Manny Ramirez close to signing with A's
Person with knowledge of negotiations: Suspended star Manny Ramirez close to signing with A's
By The Associated Press

PHOENIX (AP) ' A person with knowledge of the negotiations says slugger Manny Ramirez is close to signing a contract with the Oakland Athletics that would be worth approximately $500,000.

ESPN first reported the sides had reached agreement Monday, speaking directly to the slugger. A person confirmed the sides were closing in on a contract, speaking on condition of anonymity because Ramirez still must take a physical and likely another drug test.

The A's made public their interest in Ramirez, who must first serve a 50-game suspension for his second positive drug test before he can play for Oakland. Barring rainouts, his first game could be May 30 ' on his 40th birthday.

Ramirez was expected to sign a minor league deal, which would keep him off the 40-man roster.

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