The Anaheim Angels traded troubled outfielder Jose Guillen to the Washington-bound Expos for outfielder Juan Rivera and prospect Maicer Izturis yesterday.
"It was the best thing that could happen, taking into consideration the way things ended last season between us," said Guillen, who hit .294 with 27 homers and a career-high 104 RBIs in 2004.
Guillen was suspended for the last eight games of the regular season and dropped from Anaheim's playoff roster after he threw a tantrum in the dugout and clubhouse when he was removed for a pinch runner Sept. 25. The Expos, meanwhile, will be renamed the Washington Nationals on Monday.
Randy Johnson is waiting for the Arizona Diamondbacks to come to him with specific trade possibilities, with his only firm stipulation being that the new team be a contender, one of his agents, Alan Nero, said. Johnson will earn $16 million next season, the final year of his contract with Arizona. The Yankees head the list of teams with interest . . . Pitchers Kris Benson and Al Leiter are likely to be back with the New York Mets next season. Benson closed in on a three-year deal worth about $22.5 million, a baseball official with knowledge of the negotiations said on the condition of anonymity. Leiter is nearing agreement on a one-year contract worth $4 million to $5 million . . . Chris Young, a 6-foot-10-inch pitcher approached recently about playing in the NBA, agreed to a $1.5 million, three-year contract with the Texas Rangers . . . The Chicago White Sox avoided arbitration with righthander Jon Garland, agreeing to a $3.4 million, one-year contract. Garland, who got a $1.1 million raise, was 12-11 with a 4.89 ERA last season.