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Sports in brief: M’s finalize Kotchman deal

Baseball: The Mariners finalized the trade with the Boston Red Sox on Thursday that brings first baseman Casey Kotchman to Seattle for outfielder Bill Hall, a player to be named (probably a minor leaguer) and cash.

Kotchman passed his physical to complete the deal, which had been agreed to Tuesday.

As a result of the deal, Seattle won’t bring back first baseman Russell Branyan.

Kotchman is 26 and fits Zduriencik’s plan to rebuild the M’s through defense, pitching and youth. He is less of a power hitter but is eight years younger and a better defender than Branyan.

Kotchman has not made an error over his last 185 games and last year became just the third first baseman in major league history with a perfect fielding percentage while playing at least 108 games at the position.

He is a .269 career hitter who has never hit more than 14 home runs in a season.

Associated Press

WSU to play EWU in 2012

College football: Two years ago, Washington State University hired head football coach Paul Wulff away from Eastern Washington. At that time, Wulff said he hoped to play the Eagles some time, though not right away.

He’ll get his wish, though not right away.

A WSU source, who requested anonymity, confirmed Thursday the Cougars will host Eastern in 2012.

Despite their proximity, Eastern, a member of the Football Champion Subdivision’s Big Sky Conference, and Pac-10 member WSU have played just twice, the last time in 1908. WSU won both games between the schools by a combined score of 119-0. The Cougars will host another Big Sky member, Montana State, this fall, along with road games at Oklahoma State and SMU.

Vince Grippi

Grant, Kerney face surgeries

NFL: Seattle Seahawks safety Deon Grant was scheduled to have wrist surgery and defensive end Patrick Kerney elbow surgery on Thursday.

The 30-year-old Grant played the last six games with a cast over his left wrist. He said this week that Dr. Carlton Keck, a specialist in Seattle, was to place pins in his wrist and reconstruct a torn ligament

Kerney, 33, is having surgery to remove loose cartilage and bone fragments in his left elbow.

Associated Press

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