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Wednesday, January 16, 2008
Hendrickson joins Marlins; Sanchez likely not ready for start of spring camp news services

MIAMI -- Mark Hendrickson agreed to a $1.5 million, one-year contract Wednesday with the Florida Marlins, who expect him to provide depth and experience for a young rotation ravaged by injuries last season.

Hendrickson can make an additional $500,000 in performance bonuses. The 6-foot-9 left-hander, a former NBA player, went 4-8 with a 5.21 ERA for the Los Angeles Dodgers last year. He appeared in a career-high 39 games, and was 3-7 with a 6.13 ERA in 15 starts.

The 33-year-old Hendrickson became a free agent last month when the Dodgers declined to offer him a contract before the Dec. 12 deadline. He is 43-55 with a 5.01 ERA in 179 major league games, including 135 starts. He also has pitched for Toronto and Tampa Bay.

"Mark gives us another quality left-handed arm in our rotation, and his experience and veteran leadership should benefit our clubhouse," Florida manager Fredi Gonzalez said.

The Marlins also signed left-hander Randy Williams to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training, and invited infielder Gaby Sanchez to spring training.

Hendrickson would make $50,000 if he starts 20 games, another $50,000 if he starts 22 times, and $100,000 each time he reaches milestones of 24, 26, 28 and 30 games started.

Injuries sidelined pitchers Josh Johnson, Anibal Sanchez and Ricky Nolasco for most of last season, when Florida starters combined for a 5.58 ERA, worst in the majors. Johnson is expected to miss the 2008 season following reconstructive elbow surgery in August.

Sanchez will take the mound Monday to begin a throwing program for the first time since shoulder surgery ended his season in 2007. He is not expected to be ready for spring training.

"I came here early because I'm still doing rehab. But I will not be ready for [the start of] spring training," he said, according to the Palm Beach Post.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.