Giants, DeRosa agree on two-year deal

The San Francisco Giants hope Mark DeRosa can provide the power in

the middle of the lineup they’ve been seeking this winter.

The Giants made their first big splash of the offseason

Monday, reaching an agreement with the free-agent infielder on a

two-year contract. Giants spokesman Jim Moorehead said the 12-year

veteran was in San Francisco and passed a physical Monday. The team

planned to formally announce his deal Tuesday.

News that the parties were close to a deal was reported

Monday by Ken Rosenthal of

One of general manager Brian Sabean’s top priorities this

offseason was upgrading the Giants’ offense — and acquiring DeRosa

is a significant step in that direction.

San Francisco also is working to finalize a contract to bring

back infielder Juan Uribe.

DeRosa, who turns 35 in February, has been on the Giants’

radar for a while. He can play on either corner in the infield or

outfield, giving San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy greater

flexibility with his lineup. He likely will play third, moving

slugger Pablo Sandoval to first and giving the Giants more power

and offensive punch at that position.

DeRosa underwent left wrist surgery after the 2009 season,

when he batted .250 with a career-best 23 homers to go along with

78 RBIs for Cleveland and St. Louis. He was traded from the Indians

to the Cardinals on June 27 but was in the St. Louis lineup for

three games before hurting his wrist against San Francisco. He

spent a stint on the disabled list for an injury that was later

diagnosed as a partially torn tendon sheath.

DeRosa, who struggled offensively with the wrist injury, led

the Cardinals with five hits (5 for 13) when they were swept by the

Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL division series.

The Cardinals had hoped to re-sign DeRosa, who declined their

salary arbitration offer. He is a career .275 hitter with Atlanta,

Texas, the Chicago Cubs, Cleveland and St. Louis.

The 30-year-old Uribe began the 2009 campaign as a backup but

wound up playing in 122 games at third, shortstop and second in his

first season with San Francisco. He batted .289 with 16 homers and

55 RBIs.