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Milledge, Mets Agree To Terms

August 19, 2003

The Mets have signed first-round pick Lastings Milledge, an outfielder from Lakewood Ranch High in Bradenton, Fla. The draft's 12th overall selection received a $2.075 bonus, which will be spread over five years because he is a dual-sport athlete.

Though Milledge hadn't played football since he emerged as a top baseball prospect two years ago, Mississippi Gulf Coast CC still offered him the chance to play both sports.

"We are very pleased to make this announcement today," Mets interim general manager Jim Duquette said. "We recently concluded an extensive investigation of Lastings' background following recently published reports of nearly two-year old allegations. We were satisfied with the results of our investigation and proceeded to complete the negotiations on the contract.

Milledge, 18, hit .414-10-35 with 42 steals in his senior year. He will report to Rookie-level Kingsport of the Appalachian League.

"We are pleased to bring a player with Lastings' tools into our organization," assistant GM Gary LaRocque said. "He has the ability to hit for average and power and has all the potential to be a fine major league player."

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