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Andruw signs deal to play in Japan

Andruw signs deal to play in Japan

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Andruw signs deal to play in Japan
Five-time All-Star Andruw Jones is taking his career to Japan.

The 35-year-old outfielder signed a one-year, $3.5 million contract with the Rakuten Eagles of Japan's Pacific League. The club officially announced the deal Sunday.

Jones spent the past two seasons with the Yankees, batting .197 with 14 homers in 94 games in 2012, as he split time in the corner outfield spots and designated hitter.

In his 17-year career in the Majors, Jones batted .254 and drove in 1,289 runs with 434 home runs. The Eagles hit 52 homers last season, the fewest in Japan. A native of Curacao, Jones will play in the 2013 World Baseball Classic for the Kingdom of the Netherlands, as he did in '06.

Jones played the majority of his career in Atlanta, where he emerged as one of baseball's premier outfielders. He won 10 straight Gold Glove Awards in center field from 1998-2007. He finished second in the 2005 National League MVP voting to Albert Pujols, batting .263 with 51 homers and 128 RBIs for the NL East champion Braves.

Adam Berry is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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