Furcal to sign with Braves

The Braves have apparently reversed their field and are on the verge of signing shortstop Rafael Furcal for a second tour of duty with Atlanta. Furcal has rejected the A's and is closing in on a three-year deal with the Braves for approximately $30 million, with an option, according to major-league sources.

"They're in deep," Furcal's agent, Paul Kinzer, told FOXSports.com of the Braves' interest on Monday night, before a decision had been reached. "He's seriously considering it." ESPN has since confirmed that the deal would be announced soon.

Oakland was believed to have made a four-year, $40 million offer to Furcal and the Dodgers have apparently been offering a shorter period of time. However, an anonymous front office executive said that Furcal "will do whatever he can not to go to Oakland," citing Furcal's preference to be with one of his prior teams.

Furcal, 31, left the Braves for the Dodgers after the 2005 season, signing a three-year, $39 million free-agent contract. He had been injured two of the three years, including back surgery, and played only briefly in 2008.

The Dodgers have been burned badly by long-term contracts (Schmidt and Pierre to name a couple) and are leery of tying up big money on a player that has health problems -- particularly after a back operation.

Kinzer said last week that the A's, Dodgers, Blue Jays and Royals were the four finalists for Furcal. The Blue Jays and Royals, however, fell out of the running due to economic reasons, according to major-league sources. The Dodgers apparently were not willing to offer Furcal more than two years.

Orlando Cabrera would become the top shortstop on the free-agent market and become a prime candidate for the Dodgers.

Other Dodgers options would include re-signing Angel Berroa or trading for the Pirates' Jack Wilson. The Pirates had originally asked for shortstop Chin-Lung Hu and outfielder Delwyn Young in exchange for Wilson.

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