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Agent says pitcher taking time to meet with teams

NEW YORK -- Carl Pavano is likely to take until mid-December
or later before deciding which team to sign with, his agent said
Friday.

The free-agent pitcher met Thursday with the Red Sox and visited
Boston's Curt Schilling. Pavano already met earlier this month with
Yankees manager Joe Torre in Florida and is planning trips to
Seattle, Detroit, New York and Baltimore, agent Scott Shapiro said.

"We don't have any time pressures," Shapiro said Friday.
"We're taking the time to gather information. It's important for
Carl to get an opportunity to get comfortable with the
organization."

Shapiro said the trip to New York would be to get acquainted
with Yankees personnel, and that Pavano had no current plans to
meet with the Mets.

"We haven't really had any extensive dialogue yet because
Omar's been busy trying to get his arms around the Mets," Shapiro
said.

New general manager Omar Minaya has worked toward finalizing
contracts to keep pitchers Al Leiter and Kris Benson, and needs to
hire the team's new coaching staff in conjunction with new manager
Willie Randolph.

Shapiro said the meeting with Torre took place at a restaurant
in Palm Beach, Fla., where Torre was attending a family event.

"Carl absolutely loved the meeting. He left the meeting very
excited about the possibilities," Shapiro said. "We're definitely
visiting them in New York. I hope the folks that would be involved
in training and coaching would be there."

Shapiro and Seattle attempted Friday to determine when Pavano
will meet with the Mariners.

A 28-year-old right-hander who went a career-best 18-8 with a
3.00 ERA for the Florida Marlins this season, Pavano has a 57-58
record in seven years with the Expos and Marlins.