Eighteen days after demanding a trade from the Oakland Athletics, left-hander Kenny Rogers rescinded his demand Monday and decided to spend one more season with the team.
The A's removed an option for the 2000 season from Rogers' contract, meaning the pitcher will be a free agent after next season and be able to pitch closer to his home in Tampa, Fla.
"I don't want to be on the West Coast for another couple of years," he said in a conference call from his home Monday night. "I can make it another year easily, but that's too far to be away from my kids (for more than one year)."
As Rogers spoke on the conference call, his two children -- a 5-year-old and a 20-month-old -- screamed in the background.
"When I demanded a trade, I wanted to be closer to home. But once you look at the options, I didn't want to get stuck three years where I didn't want to play," he said. "After next year, I'll be a free agent and I'll pick where I want to play after that."
Rogers, traded to the A's from the New York Yankees for Scott Brosius before last season, would have become a free agent if the Athletics hadn't traded him by March 15. As a veteran player traded during the middle of a multiyear contract, he had the right to demand a trade by Oakland.
Rogers was the Athletics' best pitcher this past season, going 16-8 with a 3.17 ERA. He went 11-0 with a 1.96 ERA at home in his first season in Oakland.
He became the first AL pitcher since at least 1951 to go undefeated at home for an entire season while recording at least 10 decisions. Records before 1951 were not aailable.
A former member of the Texas Rangers, he thrived in Oakland after two frustrating years with the Yankees.
"All I wanted was to get healthy and get my feet back on the ground," he said. "I was comfortable in Oakland and knowing that (manager) Art (Howe) is coming back makes it a little easier to do this."
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