11/2 Free agency season underway

Cubs first baseman Xavier Nady was one of 142 players who became a free agent after the final out of the World Series Monday night. Due to recent changes in the players’ basic agreement, the exclusive negotiating period for free agents and their current clubs has been shortened to five days from 15. On the sixth day, free agent players are eligible to negotiate and sign with any team.

Also, third baseman Aramis Ramirez has three days to decide whether to exercise his $14.6 million player option for 2011 and return to the Cubs. Ramirez did indicate at the end of the season that he expected to do so. Ramirez has until midnight Thursday to decide. This season, he batted .241, including a .207 average before the All-Star break, and finished with 25 homers, 21 doubles and 83 RBIs in 124 games while battling nagging injuries.

– Carrie Muskat

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