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Hairston Jr. close to signing with Friars

A versatile player I thought would have been a nice addition to the Cardinals roster, Jerry Hairston Jr., seems on the verge of signing with the Padres.

Fox's Ken Rosenthal said Hairston would be re-united with his brother, Scott, who was recently picked up by San Diego in a trade with Oakland. He likely will get a one-year contract worth a little more than $2 million.

Hairston Jr. can play pretty much everywhere except pitcher, catcher and he hasn't played first base that I can recall. He's got a good glove and nice speed. While his batting average has been all over the place in recent seasons, St. Louis manager Tony La Russa's specialty is maximizing the use of his part-time players. So it would have been interesting to see what he could do with the utility man.